Mumaleary's Blog

Cheaper than therapy

Supporting our Sporting Sisters… (or why physical activity is so important for us girls)

Over the last couple of months, probably since I ran my first race of the year, The Wirral Way half marathon on 8th January, I have been thinking more about what sport means to me…by sport- I principally mean running, yoga and the odd few lengths whilst the kids are swimming.

At school I wasn’t a natural sports woman- my hand eye coordination is aabsolutely awful and I was forever trapped between the option of pitting everything into swinging my rounders bat and hitting fresh air anyway or ‘styling it out’ and barely raising my wrist before slinking off to ‘sit off’ with the cool girls.

No- my early experience of team sport taught me that I prefer the stuff where I can only embarrass myself as opposed to letting a whole team down. The memories of missing an all important and ‘easy’ catch in netball, numerous air shots in tennis and totally spooning it in front of a wide open goal still make my cheeks flush almost 3 decades on and yet running with friends, a serious session of hot yoga or a silent swim are things that I absolutely LOVE and make my cheeks flush in a totally different amd all together more welcome way.

As a child mum used to run in the mornings before our dad left for work (obviously after he died this was off the agenda) but she played badminton every Friday which meant Film nights for my sister and our two bessies, Sarah-Jane and Rachel. At almost 74 she still plays at least twice a week and regularly goes walking with a group; Being active was normal in our house. Our dad played squash and went windsurfing every Sunday and we were forever being ferried to swimming and gyming and the rest of it. Gymnastics was my absolute favourite thing and going on a Friday with H it is all I can manage not to get up on the beam or crack out a cartwheel- it felt like magic ¬†and I wasn’t even that good!

I know that this isn’t the experience for everyone and, since running the London marathon in April, I am realising just how many women feel that exercise is an unreachable goal… When I crossed the finish line at London this year I had 131 messages! 131- WOW. Lots of congratulations from men and women but many more from women- mainly mum’s, saying that they could not imagine being able to run 10km, let alone a marathon. Many went on to say that they can’t remember the last time they did anything more physical than running after a scooting toddler (and I am not for a second saying that’s not physical but it’s not a 100% reliable or safe form of exercise is it!)

I have written before about how, when I was at one of my lowest points- signed off work and living back at home with my mum- we swam. Every single day, come rain or shine we got up (or to put it more accurately, my mum got me up), we drove to the pool and both swam. Slowly, slowly; stroke by stroke, I got better. Don’t get me wrong- I was also speaking to a counsellor and taking medication but, I know categorically that the swimming helped significantly- me and my mum. The incredible documentary Mind over Marathon and the strength of the Heads Together campaign is making it more and more normal to talk about mental health and, a part of the discussion is happily focusing on the part physical health and being active play on being mentally well. If exercise wasn’t a part of my life, I know that I would be in a very different place and not a good one.

Now, as a mum of 2 wonderful daughters I want to be at my best for them. Exercise keeps my head out of the shed and they see that it is something that I do. Something that I prioritise and make time for. I love taking them swimming and gyming and now B is trying her hand at tennis (thanks to the free LTA initiative) and is already better than me but, the main thing is they enjoy it and, I hope that in laying these foundations early they will foster a love of sport or, at the very least not fake period pains every PE class…

It is important for me that our girls grow up knowing that they have access to any job any sport, any hobby that they want to pursue. That there isn’t such a thing as a boy’s game and yet sadly, at the moment that simply isn’t the case. At the school sports day this week I was absolutely gobsmacked when the father’s race was longer by a good 10 metres than the mum’s race. WHAT?! Why?! Women run the same distance as men in athletics meets, the kids all ran the same distance in their races- what message does that send out? Mum’s can’t go as far? aren’t as fast? Aren’t as strong? I totally do not get it. I am going to pluck up the courage to be the pain in the ass parent that asks those questions…

and, on that note-

Today, whilst having a long over due hair cut I was reading “Eat Sweat Play by @Anna_Kessel . Initially I was photographing paragraphs that resonated with me but I pretty quickly realised that could amount to around 70% of the book. It is amazing and horrifying in equal measure. Nodding enthusiastically whilst getting a new do isn’t recommend and crying in a packed hair salon ain’t the best either but it is an brilliant and really important book which highlights how women are still marginalised in sport- ok to be the pit girls and the ones giving out the teddies at the Tour de France but not good enough for the big roles…. I would urge you to read it. It goes through a whole host of life experiences- pregnancy and being a mum are just two that can mean we as women drop sport and, once we’ve ‘thrown in the towel’ what will prompt us to pick it up again? Pressure about the way we look or a positive desire to feel fit and strong?

Wow- that turned into a bit of a rant- apologies for the ramble, there you have it- another blog post…perhaps I am getting my mojo back. ūüėä

I would love to hear your experience of sport and exercise and any book recommendations are always welcome.

Lots of love,

Muma.

XxxX

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Love beats Hate.

It’s been a long time since I last felt the urge to log on and blog but today, today I felt that, in order for me to try and make some sense of the indefensible, in order to show my respects and to mark this god awful day I should write.

My darling, darling girls,

I hope that this morning you didn’t notice that the radio was on super softly so you couldn’t hear the words ‘murder’, ‘suicide bomber’, ‘terror attack’, ’22 confirmed dead, some of them children’.

I hope you didn’t spot how wet my eyes were and how reluctant I was to let you go when I dropped you off at school.

I am so grateful that you were so wrapped up in your Lego cards you didn’t pick up on me almost choking when I said that I will love you until the seas run dry.

I am relieved that there was the distraction of sunshine and ballet and playing outside at Grandma’s rendering TV redundant but, I am also so, so deeply sad that tonight and for every night to come there are other families that are not as lucky as us. Families that are broken, lives shattered. Parents that will never breathe in the scent of their children again. I can not get my head around that at all.

Terrorism isn’t something new, there have always been and, will always be some cruel and dangerous people in the world. Last night, terrorism came (again to Manchester) and, I am sad to say, I don’t think this is the last we will see of this in your life times.

I can not profess to know the motives of the man who detonated a bomb after a pop concert last night or the person who drove a car into a crowded street but, I do know their minds are not wired the same way as ours. Their minds work on the idea that they can frighten people into doing or being what they want us to be. By committing these horrible, vicious attacks they hope to frighten us into living half lives, into shuffling about avoiding other people’s eyes. Not smiling at the sunshine and stopping to smell the roses.

As a mummy, it is my job to protect you and care for you as best I can and, I have never, ever felt more grateful to be able to have the time to be around as much as I am to do that. As a mummy though, it is also my job to be honest with you and so, with a heavy heart I must tell you both this.

Daddy and I can not protect you against this. I want nothing more on this earth than to wrap you up in cotton wool, stop all the clocks and stay in doors together forever; kind of like Branch from Trolls in his underground bunker but, drinking your own sweat is existing, not living.

Living my loves is about experiencing all that this beautiful, painful, screwed up world has to offer. It is about love and friendship and music and reading and travelling and tasting and EVERYTHING.

To attempt to live life avoiding danger or avoiding risk is to miss the point entirely.

So, instead, I will lead by example. I intend to redouble my efforts to show you all the wonders that this glorious planet has to offer. I want to remind you that, generally, life IS good and that love will always win over hate.

When we are frightened, we aren’t alone, and, just like Ella’s mummy says- “We must simply have courage and be kind.”

It isn’t simple. It is sometimes hard, it is brave and it can be scary but without that, without love, kindness and courage, what have we got?

Love and compassion, conversation and compromise, friendship and community are the most important tools that we have for overcoming fear. Manchester is full of all of these qualities. Our country is full of all of these qualities. The world, the world my darling is full of these amazing qualities and eventually they will prevail.

Muma.

XxxX

 

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For my baby…now your no longer a baby. (Or Happy Birthday Bethan #5!)

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To my darling Girl.

This time 5 whole years ago I was laid up in Slough hospital bed feeling much as I do now. Tired, emotional and a little anxious about what the future held.

Over the last half decade I have had the honour and pleasure of being your Muma. I have been your first port of call for everything you’ve needed and it has been so very precious.

Daddy and I are so proud of the loving, clever, sensitive, gym loving, map reading, funny little artist you are becoming. You make me beam when I see you with your baby cousin or your sister.
Your concern for others is so gentle and genuine and it is a beautiful thing. Don’t ever lose that.
Your desire to become a doctor is growing by the day it seems and I love to read the body book with you and learn new things along side you.
I love your confidence with animals and your willingness to try new foods. You are sometimes so quiet and thoughtful seeming so nervous and unsure and then KAZAM- you hit me with something so grown up.

Today you loved your gym party and it was awesome to see you surrounded by your friends and family having a ball. You played and shared and enjoyed showing everyone what to do without being a show off; no mean feat!

Big school is looming large on the horizon and with that comes big changes for Leary Life.
I will miss our Fridays together with your sister. I will miss chatting together over lunch watching I can Cook and I will miss your quiet little ways around the house.

But- there is so much for you to look forward to. So many new friends to make and things to do and learn.
You are ready for school. You don’t need me to tell you what to do but, because I am your Muma it is sort of in the job description so here goes:
Do your best, be kind, be confident and most of all, BE YOU.
I’ll be here waiting to hear all about it!

You are perfect and you are loved more than words can say.

Always.

Muma.

XxxxxxxX

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The times they are a changing…

Hi, long time no see and all that- apologies for the radio silence but I’ve been pretty busy.

Anyway, here we are, September, my favourite month of the year by far…usually.
This time around however it seems to have both crept up on me and been hanging over my head for months.
A new school year, a new season, another birthday both for me and my big little- there is much to celebrate and look forward to but somehow, I just don’t feel quite ready.

The holidays have been jam packed with weekends away, fun times with friends and the usual blend of chaos and ‘high spirits’ (by which I mean totally ignoring my reasonable requests and doing whatever the hell they like) but somewhere inside me I’ve had a niggle…I’ve felt a bit discombobulated.

On Monday our baby girl, my angel, turns 5. Tomorrow she’s having a fantabulous cookies and milk gym party. Soon, she’ll be at school full time and our life together will never be quite the same again.
I’ll still have the brilliance that is my baby baby at home with me on a Friday but she too is beginning at pre-school and, if I’m to prevent them turning into ‘those weird kids’ I need to accept that I can no longer refer to them as babies (no matter how I think it helps explain away the new mum muffin top).

My heart is hurting. Big time. I want to bottle the smell of their hair, the sound of them sleeping and the warmth of their after sleep skin. I can’t. You can’t hold back time and frankly, you’re a fool for trying but seriously, who hasn’t.

So, rather than stay here wollowing in the bath (lovely image for you all there!) today I’m going to pull on my big girl knickers, sew on the name tags, sort out the school shoes and finish our packing because, before I have to face full on reality, we have a week in Greece to enjoy. No phones (well, not too much) no school and no one to stop me holding on to my babies for a tiny bit longer.

I hope you are holding on and letting go more successfully than me….send tips if you are!

Strength and Love

Muma. X

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The only way is Honest.

Sometimes, something gets me so wound up and riled that rather than just  taking some deep breaths and counting to ten I have got to get it out of my system. I have got to share my ranty thoughts with the nation. Apologies.

So…I might as well just launch into it…I’m talking about the story of Natasha Argent cheating in last week’s London Marathon.

Last Sunday, as thousands of people were celebrating their own personal victories having run the Virgin London Marathon, Natasha posted pictures of herself with her medal as if she were a part of that club. People congratulated her and she accepted their praise and compliments. How could she accept those words when she knew it was all a lie and how on earth did she expect to get away with it?

Natasha, James Argents sister from The Only Way is Essex, has now had her results removed from the VLM site and has apparently returned her medal. That must feel pretty bloody awful but hopefully a lesson learnt.

My husband has just asked me whether I’ve ever made a mistake. Clearly I have. Loads of times and I am sure I will continue to do so. He said it isn’t fair to chastise someone when none of us are perfect and I totally agree. I am not writing to be cruel. I am simply offering my take on the situation.

Times have changed. Today people can become famous instantly for no good reason. You can be an internet sensation on the cover of a million magazines without having a skill or any talent to your name. The public seem to crave ‘news’ about who’s fat, thin, gay, straight in, out and anything in between and there is a seemingly endless stream of Kardashian wannabes that are willing to feed this addiction. Don’t get me wrong, this Big Brother generation has also given rise to incredibly ambitious and talented individuals who have used the boom in social media to market their businesses and get to where they want to be but perhaps they are the exception rather than the norm?

 

In the good old days you had to really graft for stuff. Most ‘Famous People’ were famous FOR something, a skill or talent that they had practised over a long period.

There was no instant gratification.

And there’s the problem. Real life can be tough. Running a marathon is tough. It takes work, it takes dedication and above all, it takes TIME.

If you are used to getting things on demand, without putting in any work or time or real effort, that’s a foreign concept. Training for 16 weeks over the freezing winter months isn’t going to happen.

 

I honestly believe that Nataha (and Jade Goodie when she gave up part way through the marathon and joked beforehand about her lack of preparation) thought that you could turn up, have a jog and collect a medal. Job done. Well, thankfully, feats like running a marathon will never stop taking time, effort and dedication. That is why not everyone does them.

If I’m honest, I know myself that I should have put in more time. I should have got out of my comfort zone more with my training and diet. If I had given it my all, whatever my finish time, I would have been able to look myself in the eye afterwards and feel a genuine sense of pride. As it is, I’m pleased to say I have completed the London marathon 3 times and in doing so have raised over ¬£10,000 for charity (don’t even get me started on how let down the charity she was running for have been) but, ¬†should I get a place in 2017 I want to do the event and myself justice.

I want to be able to say I did my best and really, truly mean it because, but, if I ¬†don’t, at least I’ll only be cheating myself.

The only way is honest, with yourself and with the outside world too and I think that a lot of people would do well to remember that.

Have a lovely bank holiday!

Much Love,

Muma.

XxxX

 

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Memories Matter

Today has, pretty much been a perfect day.

It began when our littlest stroked my cheek and told me it was morning. She had already clambered into our bed at around six so the fact that she’d gone back to sleep at all was very welcome. 7.07 is a far more acceptable wake up call!

We had a cuddle and read “We’re all going on a bear hunt” followed by a book about farm animals followed by “We’re all going on a bear hunt” again by which time we were joined by the big little. All very sociable and civilised. We padded downstairs for breakfast using ‘quiet moutheses’ to talk as daddy had a work do last night ūüėČ

Normally, Saturday is swimming day but, this week is a pretty big deal in Leary land…The girls have their first big ballet performance so today was the final practise.

I duly fashioned 2 scraggy buns out of their rediculous bedheads, decanted them into their leotards and balerros and whisked them off to the local hall for a rendition of “Me and my teddy bear” followed by “12345”.

Now, at last week’s practise the littlest got stage fright, pee’d in her leotard and promptly fell over, on stage due to the tinkle on her tapshoes. My heart broke for her but it was hard to verbalise that as I was simultaneously choking on my laughter.

Today, they were both perfect. The whole class were. My face ached from smiling, my eyes pricked with tears of joy and pride and I knew that I would treasure that image of my babies on stage yelling about their teddies forever.

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Later on, in a rare example of spontinaety I headed over to Liverpool for a look around the shops. Since discovering that gift cards have an expiry date my Christmas vouchers have been burning a hole in my pocket so, I hot footed it to Liverpool 1 and my spiritual home of John Lewis.

In the homeware section I was met with a display of Cornishware pottery which stopped me in my tracks. I was transported back to my childhood, to Earl Grey tea and Lemon cake, to Ludlow and my Grandma’s kitchen with fond memories of baking and sewing and spending time with my cousins because ¬†when all’s said and done, the battle of wills about not washing up or putting elbows on the table all fade and become rose tinted or at least sepia toned!

It made me think of an event that my friends are hosting in a few weeks called Memories Matter. An amazing event to raise much needed funds into research of dementia and Alzheimers. In her latter years my Grandma suffered with the disease and to say it is cruel is a vast, vast understatement and anything we can do to gain a greater understanding is so important.

Memories are like a comfort blanket, a way back home when you’re all at sea. They ground you and are a blue print for the way you do, or don’t want to do things going forwards. Memories really do matter.

For that to be taken from you, for only confusing fragments to remain so you are left feeling that the word you are searching for, or that holiday you went on or the child you raised are somehow beyond a veil, an opaque curtain that you can’t reach behind is devastating. For the sufferer and those watching the illness take hold.

There’s no telling which memories will mean the most to our girls as they grow up. It may not always the big gestures or the expensive holidays and trips that take poll position in people’s minds and that’s okay, in fact that’s pretty perfect.¬†Hopefully, some of our chaotic, mostly mundane but occasionally exciting life is creating memories that our girls will treasure for a lifetime.

Perhaps when I’m long gone, they’ll catch a wiff of my perfume and recall our mad morning routines or hear James or The Ramones on the radio and think back to dancing in the kitchen with their daddy and I. Maybe they’ll hear a smoke alarm and think of our family dinners!

This blog is a tiny way for me to record some of the most significant milestones of Leary Life. And, hopefully, if the time ever comes, it will act for my girls as their own comfort blanket so that they will know that they are loved beyond measure whether I can  tell them or not.

Happy Mothers Day my darling girls.

You have given me the huge honour of calling myself your mum. I love you both until the seas run dry; and that will never happen.

Muma.

XxxX

PS- If you’d like to know more about Memories Matter, search for it on Facebook. It is in Paradox on 20th March but tickets are very limited.

 

 

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F’in Friday #01

Well, it certainly seems that the old adage is true…the older you get the quicker life goes.

Today is the fourth Friday in January. January 2016. 20 actual 16. RIDICULOUS.

We are nuts deep in the longest, coldest, skintest, most depressing month of the year. In fact, Monday 19th January was named ‘Blue Monday’, officially the most depressing day of the year- nice!

Spring is an age away, payday is still a distant speck on the horizon but hark…what’s that thud…oh, the credit card bill reminding us of panic purchases and festive excesses. YEY.

So, thanks to all of this you might think that F’in Friday is basically a blog based moan fest but no- in fact I am feeling pretty content with my little lot at the moment.

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I have much to be grateful for- including my health and so F’in Friday is simply a space for me to document what I am doing health and fitness wise each week, the new things I’m trying, the stuff I’m enjoying and what I’ll be giving a wide berth in future maybe! Here goes…

FATNESS:

We don’t have scales at home. I can’t see the point- I know when I’m eating well and doing the ‘right stuff’ and I know when I’m buying 3 creme eggs for ¬£1 and eating them all in one sitting. When my maternity jeans are snug ( and the little little has celebrated her 3rd birthday) I¬†appreciate that steps need to be taken! So, in the interests of research this week I used one of those weighing machines in Boots…I hadn’t anticipated that it would announce to the whole shop that I was weighing myself but still- we have to start somewhere and that was it. I’m not quite sure what I was expecting but it sure as hell wasn’t that I am 1/3 fat. WHAT?! 33.2% of me is basically lard…my body fat is almost in the POOR category…That has got to be a mistake I thought so I stomped up to Tesco and did exactly the same thing (get a second opinion and all that!) Tesco felt only slightly differently- 28.7% fat- still falling outside of the ‘normal’ range…

The plan is to weigh in weekly and hopefully see these figures move somewhere closer to the GOOD range.

FITNESS:

A fab week on this score- My friends and I completed the Liverpool Winter Run on Sunday and it was a really great experience. Yes it was Baltic- we drove through sleet and snow on the way but starting and finishing in the Echo was a stroke of genius and I would definitely be up for doing it again. I like to have a little run out. It is good for my head, a brilliant stress reliever and I have come to really enjoy it and I never thought that would happen!

 

I finished in 1hr 2mins so there is some room for improvement there too. My aim is to get around 50 mins by the end of the year.

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I have also sweated it out at Commando this week- an outdoor circuit training class run by an ex-marine. It is brilliant-Tough but once you’re able to walk again you feel pretty good- promise!

I am really chuffed that this week also saw a little running group start in Heswall- It was a trial for a new location for ¬†Rachel’s Mums to Marathons and is literally open to anyone who fancies taking up running. I know that there are people rolling their eyes, saying they couldn’t do it but I am telling you now- barring serious injury or actual medical advice- you can. Give it a go and tell me you don’t get a buzz from getting further than you thought you could.

FOOD: 

I am a massive fan of smoothies and juices and I have these 2 most days- I love them;

Ginger Zinger

  • Juice of a 2cm chunk of ginger
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Teaspoon of honey to taste.

Put all the juice into a cup and top up with boiling water- add honey to taste. If you are an organised type you can do this in bulk and freeze into icecubes and then simply make up like a cuppa each morning. Lush!

Green Goddess

  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 2 handfuls of spinich
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 an avocado

Juice the cucumber, celery and spinach, add the lime juice and then blend in the avocado. Yummy! (honestly)

FASHION: 

I would love to be a Sweaty Betty aficionado, I love Super Dry, Adidas and all the others but realistically at the moment I am buying my sweats in Sainsbos. A solo trip to the supermarket is basically akin to a spa treatment when you’re a parent!!

Last week I spotted this beauty and the slogan is something I absolutely believe in.

Sainsburys body achieves top

No midriff showing whilst mid plank here! 

It’s open at the back but the tie at the bottom keeps in in place and with a long sleeved top underneath I think it looks really fab- even if I do say so myself!

FAD:

I am calling this a ‘fad’ because so many people think that it is. I don’t and hopefully my results in the coming weeks will show why I am a convert and distributor of the IT WORKS products. Their most well known products are “those crazy wraps”, they have been great for my wobbly mum tum but I took some time off over Christmas and definitely ¬†need to get back into my ‘wrap routine’ and for various reasons that hasn’t happened…yet. I am taking¬†the HSN and Greens daily though and do feel way more energetic and my hair and nails seem to be growing with gusto at the moment.

HSN

 

 

The products are fairly new to the UK but I am slowly building up my team and letting more people know about the products so if you’re interested in finding out more feel free to contact me, I’ll be happy to answer any questions.

So, that’s my first F’in Friday.

I would love to know what you’d suggest in terms of diet, exercise and things you do to help you feel your best.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Muma.

XxxX

 

love-your-body-and-be-healthy

 

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First World Parenting Problems #627 The scooter battle

Yesterday, following what seemed like an incredibly long break for Christmas and New Year, normality and routine resumed when Mr L returned to work.
Thanks to inset day the ankle biters and I are settling into things more gently but did at least get dressed before 2pm and I didn’t fill my face with crap so I guess we’re getting there.
As the little little turns 3 next week (WHAT?) We finally got round to writing the invites to her party and, to give people the best chance of being able to make it (although frankly it would save some cash if they were otherwise engaged) we decided to take the invites down to nursery to be put in the lucky recipients bags ASAP.
The big little wanted to scoot there….

Now, I have opinions, plenty of them as it goes and, both general life and motherhood have both had an amazing¬†ability to smack me in the face with them and force humble pie onto my plate in generous helpings over the years. That being said, I ain’t never going to be ok with coke in a baby bottle for a toddler (true story) or spray on tight white leggings and a skinny black thong on anyone other than Kate Moss so, I don’t think I’ll ever truly lose my inner Hopkins but these days I do tend to be more of a lover than a fighter, we’re all on our own journey blah blah blah.

One of the groups of people I used to be all judgy with and internally tut at were the parents who carried their children’s shit.
You know who I mean- the exasperated parent struggling with the pram and the trike on the way home from a “nice family day at the park”. I was all,

it’s their stuff, it’s their responsibility. I’ll tell you one thing for free- you’d never catch me doing that.

HA FREAKING HA HA HA.

Let’s think for a minute about the sheer lunacy of this shall we?
After an hour of preparing to leave the house with wee stops, shoe vs welly rows and scratching snot off your only cleanish top your finally on the move. #winning
You have 20 yards of wonderfulness where it’s all counting cars, commenting on local flora and forna and perhaps an approving look from an elderly passerby before the inevitable whinge…guess what…they’re bored of scooting/pram pushing/dolly carrying.
Whatcha gonna do soldier?!

Argue with a halfling who is so little they are unable to go to the toilet unaided, about the fact that they made the consious decision to bring their dolly/pram/scooter to the park/shop/any other place parents venture with them and, less than a nano second into that journey (but just far enough from the house or car) they change their teeny tiny minds and now want you to carry it.

Lets think about how that might end shall we…
a) with said child accepting the error of their ways, apologising for their embarrassing gaffe and then scooting happily home where everyone laughs about it with a nice glass of chablis
b) with said parent slamming themselves in the face for believing the halflings promises that this time things would be different and they would definitely scoot the whole mile and a half to the shops and it would take less than a fucking eternity to do so.
c) passers by calling the cops and social services after seeing a grown person rocking and crying in the street like a Romanian orphan with a bemused toddler next to them asking their dolly why they never, ever listen to mummy.

Well friends, today as the custom built micro scooter took another chunk out of my shin and the heavens opened whilst I pushed both girls in the double buggy with a slow puncture, I felt karma on my shoulder laughing her ass off.
All this in Dry January?!

First world parenting…The struggle is real people!

Loads of love,

Muma. X

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Guess who’s Back…

Happy New Year! Sorry- bit late for that I guess but previously regular readers of this blog will know I’m not one to set the clock by!

I can’t believe it has been so long since my last post. Over 3 months. Crazy how time flies.

I started blogging in 2013 and absolutely loved having the space to get my scrabbled little head out there.
Sometimes I was funny, sometimes serious, sometimes I reviewed stuff, but I was always me and always honest and people actually liked it  (they told me and I was shortlisted for an award n stuff!) and then I just stopped.
It wasn’t a consious decision. One day just rolled into another and I got out of the habit of it.
I stopped thinking I had stuff to say. There was, and is, the huge humanitarian crisis in Syria, people closer to home like my lovely friends Julia and Liz were talking about really seriously sad and difficult times and it felt to self indulgent and ungrateful to be whinging about the kids or Mr L.
Other bloggers were going absolutely stratospheric like the incredible Mini Travellers and the fabulous Honest Mum and guess I just thought oh fuck it, my little blog is never going to take off like, what’s the point. Somewhere, I lost the ‘space and time for me element’ but today, today after a long time I feel like I’ve got stuff to say and so, whether or not people read it, whether or not my blog builds again or I find the energy and momentum to take it the places I want it to go, I’m writing it so- enjoy, it feels good to be back.

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Now you are 4.

To my darling, darling girl.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Today you are 4.

Four whole years old and I have never loved you more.
You have been in my life and my heart forever it seems but I know I lived a life before you. Without you.
An unrecognisable life, one with improptu beers and meals and holidays and disposable income and late nights and lie ins.
But all of those days led me to here. To my life as your Muma. I wouldn’t change a thing.

I’m sorry that you are (again) getting quite a somber and earnest sort of birthday blog- but I have to write from the heart and this is what’s written on it at the moment.

You are my baby and I love you.
With every fibre of my being I love you.
Always.
You and your sister and your Daddy mean everything to me and I would walk across hot coals to keep you safe and happy.

bethan 4

I want to write a carefree and funny post about all the wonderful things you do. All the reasons I adore you and I’d chuck in a couple of the ways you wind me up but that will have to wait. I need you to know this;

On your birthday we are in the midst of a humanitarian crisis. There are mummy’s and daddy’s just like yours who don’t know what to do or where to turn to keep their families together.

After they put their babies to bed each night they plan and they whisper and they panic and they argue about which is the least risky risk to take.
How can they protect their children and allow them the childhood and the lives they dreamed of for them.
Do they stay, Do they go- where will they be least marginalised and where do they have the best chance of rebuilding their lives.

For your birthday we have bought you lots of lovely things:
A nurses outfit and a book about the body because you always talk about being a doctor when you grow up.
A ‘wibbly’ dolly and her own potty because you want a baby like your baby cousin that you adore
Some wipable books to get you ready for school because you simply can’t wait to be a big girl.
You have been given a train set and a cake making box and lots of other amazing treats. You are a very lucky girl.

But one very special thing I want to give you is the knowledge that the country you live in is a kind one, it cares about its neighbours and it wants to help. There are groups and individuals all over the country whose hearts are breaking just like mine to see so many people displaced and afraid and misunderstood.

I want you to know how important it is to speak out and try to make a difference even if it feels as though you are standing alone. It might be scary but it would be a far scarier world if people didn’t and you’ll never be alone because I’ve got your back. Always.

I want you to know that any tiny thing you do to help someone else is important and valued and precious.

I want you to know how very, very lucky you are to have a home and food and heat and light and power and an education.

But most of all I want to have the luxury of not knowing any of this. To have the opportunity to play dress up and lego and colouring and trains and cooking without knowing how hard and difficult the world can be and how high a price baby’s just like you are paying.
I want you to be my baby awhile longer. Safe, Loved and blissfully unaware.

Happy Birthday my darling, darling girl.

I will love you until the seas run dry.

And that will never happen.

Muma.

XxxX

If you would like to join the effort to support the refuges there are lots of was to help- there are groups sending essentials to Calais the Wirral group is here– search on line for your local one.

THANK YOU.

#everyhumanmatters

AYlan Kurdi's body being recovered from the beach.

AYlan Kurdi’s body being recovered from the beach.

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