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  • Winter Wonderland, a DITL and Making Time for Joy

    It feels like forever since I’ve blogged just for the sake of documenting, rather than to capture a specific event or milestone. Part of this is time – between my real-life job, which is really a 24/7 sort of role and means that I often come home just to sleep, and the needs of my family, which must be prioritised over the blog – and part of this is just that I’ve felt a little emotionally battered of late by the above. Sometimes I feel like I have the ability to be excellent, but with the constant pull in all directions I have no choice but to settle for mediocrity, which is so frustrating. Sometimes I feel like my name should just be ‘Sorry’; I probably spend more time apologising than actually working or parenting, and often these days I find myself feeling frustrated, discouraged and ashamed. My to-do list is enormously long and most of it has been untouched for such a period of time that it feels permanently scarred on my psyche. I am trying so hard to mother well, to be patient and kind, because after all, they are the reason behind all of my efforts. Still, sometimes I disappoint myself in the way that I relate to my children, and that hurts my heart. They are such beautiful, kind and gentle little souls. They deserve better than a tired and irritable mother.

    But, every day is a new day.  A new opportunity to greet the world, apologise for past mistakes and do something good.

    At the time that I write this, it’s seven o’ clock in the morning.  I’ve been in the office for about twenty minutes and I’m sipping my cappuccino, trying to wake up and start the day.  This morning I snuck out before the children were awake, leaving Kirsty sleeping and Josephine-dog tucked up on my vacant side of the bed.  I am working my socks off to catch up on my task list for the office, and jotting down my thoughts here as the inspiration arises.  I am determined to find the time today to document and share our weekend.

    On Saturday, we decided to film a little Day in the Life for our YouTube channel.  It’s quick and raw and dirty, with no fancy editing whatsoever; I simply wanted to record our perfectly imperfect day and to put the clips together in such a way as made chronological sense and would be accessible in the future, but my little boys love it and I am so pleased that we made the effort.  You can have a watch below if you’d like to catch up with us on film.

    Sunday was a special day for me.  My sons and I took the train in to London to visit Winter Wonderland, where we had press tickets for the day.  Ordinarily I would have balked at bringing two three-year-olds to a theme park alone, but when it came to it, I couldn’t turn down the opportunity for such an adventure and it seemed silly to bring Kirsty and the one-year-olds into London just for additional adult back-up.  It turns out that I needn’t have worried at all; Winter Wonderland on a Sunday morning and early afternoon is perfect for little people, with minimal crowds and virtually no queues for the rides themselves.  We found plenty for the boys to enjoy and they were able to navigate their environment independently, on foot, without any risk of trampling!  I was so proud of them, and of me.

    We had press tickets for the Sooty and Sweep show.  I remembered Sooty and Sweep from my own childhood and felt quite nostalgic to see these little puppets again!  I was quite surprised by how near the mark some of the jokes were in this show but, of course, it all sails right over the children’s heads and gave the adults in the audience a bit of a titter.  It was the first time that my sons (newly three) had been able to sit through a whole show without getting restless and they really enjoyed ‘helping’ to find naughty Sweep, the bit with the watergun and Sooty getting bashed with a frying pan – though we promptly secured our own utensil cupboard when we got home, for fear that they might try to replicate the humour with their little sisters!  We wouldn’t have thought to see a show if we hadn’t been given complimentary tickets, but this was a definite win for us.

    We had also been given tickets for Zippo’s Circus, but the boys were so desperate to explore the funfair itself that we gave this a miss and wandered outside.

    The boys spent a while staring at this rollercoaster and desperately wanted to give it a try – much to my bafflement!  Of course, they were much too small and so we settled on the mini-coaster that you can see in the ride below.  Their first little rollercoaster!  They loved it.  And I feel like the luckiest woman in the world to get to experience this milestone with them.

    Aboard the ferris wheel!  They were super impressed with how high they went.  I kept my eyes open only because I was certain that dare I close them, the twins would wriggle under that bar and plummet to their deaths.  Spoiler alert: They didn’t even try.  They are such good boys and they make mothering them so easy; I am such a lucky mama, and our little adventures are always their chance to shine the brightest.

    We rode the ferris wheel twice, and as they chirped up at me about the rides, and the people that they could scurrying across the fairground, far below, I thought to myself that I am so tremendously privileged to live this life, my best life, with my sweet family and a job that I love and that if my biggest complaint is that I have too many wonderful facets in my life to fully appreciate any of them then what a fortunate woman I am.

    Of all of the rides they went on, I think that the chance to drive a fire engine was probably the highlight of their day!  They are such funny little people, and guiding them as they grow has been my biggest joy.  It is so fun to watch them develop as humans, and to observe their interests as they form.

    With thanks to Winter Wonderland for the invitation.

    How was your weekend, and how are you?



    1. Deborah
      November 21, 2017 / 5:19 pm

      Oh what a lovely day you all had. The boys must have been thrilled by it all xxx

    2. November 24, 2017 / 8:27 am

      How do the boys look SO grown up with their haircuts!? I’ve no idea how you manage to fit it all in Amber, but it’s amazing that you work so hard, blog so beautifully and still spend so much quality time with your family. Winter Wonderland looks incredible, I am insanely jealous, we definitely need to make a trip up there this year or next! xo

    3. December 19, 2017 / 11:36 pm

      Well done you on taking toddler twins into London on your own. I never attempted it but my husband used to each week and I was always in awe! Mich x

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