Life

Turning 40 – could I have finally started to grow up?

So I turned 40 this week… copenhagen_40_co2

I am not sure where the last ten years went but I know they have been busy with motherhood, marriage, readjusting to a life outside Dublin, and did I mention motherhood? I have evolved from footloose and fancy free to no respite and responsibilities.

Here are a few things I have noticed about myself and my coming of age…. have I finally grown up?  (more…)

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Living the old me the new way.

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The other night I danced and laughed late into the night like I hadn’t a care in the world. I was a touch rough around the edges the following day but it was worth it. I felt great. 6 months previously I had taken a call from an old colleague asking me to come back to work on a big job with her. (more…)

Wise Words: “Time Flies”

Unknown-1The phrases ‘they grow up so quickly’ and ‘time flies’ are the insightful words of hindsight and experience. No one can utter those words until they have long embarked on life.

‘Enjoy it! It flies.’ were the wise words uttered to me by so many since I became a parent. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, parents of older children and teenagers, those who can justify saying it. They say it because they know. “They grow up so quickly.”

It’s only now, 7 years in, that I understand the depth of that phrase.  It’s the best advice I have ever been given and yet advice I can only appreciate in hindsight.

These days the life journey is gathering momentum at a speed that seems to be getting faster and faster every few months. Another year. Another Christmas. Easter. Summer holidays.

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Now as we celebrate my little lady’s 5th birthday I am more aware than ever that time is flying by. She has grown into a little girl almost overnight and as we approach her first day of school never before have I wanted to tighten the reins on time and slow it all down.

Time is precious. Time flies by. It is five years since I gave birth and cuddled my new baby. That is the same amount of time from first year to fifth year in school. One chapter seemed a lifetime. This chapter has been a blink of an eye.

My advice to new mums as a mum who has earned some stripes… Enjoy it! It flies, because time flies when you are having fun!

Happy birthday doll!

Reality Bites…

It has been images-29a crazy few weeks and as a result I fell off the blog wagon. With my project for college submitted and a clean’er’ in tray, it is time to embrace my blog again and finally, this morning I fought the fear and went back to my TRX classes.

Having broken my little toe before Christmas (to the delight and amusement of my kids and husband) I haven’t been able to go and I have missed them.

I would like to pretend I am a keep fit guru, sleek, fit, sexy in my lyrca and beautiful sweaty. (Yup, that thought feels good.) The reality is I have convinced myself I am as fit and as slim as I was when I was 16, when I swam competitively and had not a pinch of fat.

Moving twenty years later I recently caught sight of myself in a bikini and well…..reality bites! It bit off the rest of my ‘post baby approaching 40’ self esteem and enough was enough.

I dipped my toe into jogging last year and I did the mini marathon. I was so proud of myself I hung up my runners for the year!!  I knew starting the classes I wasn’t unfit but this time it was more about addressing the butt, butt, bingo wings, butt, butt, belly. I needed to get my thumb out and sort out the wobbly wonder my body had become. I signed up for TRX and caught the bug.

A month off the classes with a pathetic excuse of a broken toe was a void and even though I missed going to my classes, it was still hard to get back into it… but now I’m back I am here to stay. It’s my precious ‘me’ time. It’s fun and I am finally seeing the difference.

Next time I decide to fly kick the coffee table on my way to running to the couch to wrestle the kids, the kids have full permission to put me on the naughty step.

‘No running in the house! No jumping on the couch!’

A Simple Cup of Tea

What is it about that initial moment when you wave the kids off to a sleepover, the house is silent, you put the kettle on. You have dreamt of this moment for ages and then you wonder what to do!

My initial feeling is to miss the little monkeys. Then I have a wave of panic that I am wasting precious time, minutes are a treat, hours are precious… A whole day and night with no weddings or plans…. is the ultimate luxury. The excitement. There are so many things I want to do and can do that I don’t know what to do and what to do first! A long bubbly bath? A nap? Have an undisturbed chat on the phone? Paint a room? Potter around the shops? The list just grows and then I get over stimulated! So I put the kettle on again and have a breather.

For just a few moments, a brief interlude, I sit and drink a full cup of hot tea, not too strong from forgetting to take the tea bag out as a result of being summoned to a ‘muuuuuuuuum’ or having to referee a squabble, not too cold from forgetting about it, leaving it half full in odd places as I move around the house, and not reheated either.

images-18Undisturbed, in silence, from the first sip to an empty cup, this is one of life’s simple pleasures. (Cue: A huge sigh of contentment!)

What I think of me v’s What my kids think of me

After watching the inspiring video, “What moms think about themselves v’s What their kids think” I decided to ask my monkeys to name three things they love about their dad. The little man’s response was confident and without hesitation. “Wrestling, playing the Xbox and more wrestling.” In hindsight this is not surprising given the amount they wrestle… but that is a blog for another day! Then the little lady named her three things with a similar assuredness but with a voice full of love. “I love Daddy’s kisses. I love when he gives me squeezes and I love when Daddy tickles me.” Daddy’s little girl just melted her Daddy’s heart.

I have to say I was a little nervous then asking them to name three things they love about me. Is that too much to ask a child? What if it’s not the answers I like or don’t want to hear? Or worse what if they can’t even think of three!
Children can boost your self esteem or be brutally honest and not so great for the self esteem. Bracing myself and assuming (hoping) the children in the video think like my children I took the plunge and bravely asked.

In order, the little man loves when we play Lego, bake and laugh together. Sigh of relief! However, the little lady took a little longer to say anything. I waited patiently and then she started pointing at her fingers and making a list. She loves when we play Lego, do jigsaws, bake, put her hair in plaits, go for a walk, cuddle on the couch, make bracelets. paint nails, when I pick her up from play school, when she wakes up in the morning and comes in to our bed for a chat, when I smile……. Phew! Massive sigh of relief! Slightly wet cheek.

photo copy 8Sometimes, when I am in the depths of rushing from my office to school runs, to starting on dinner, checking emails, doing bedtime, back to my office…running running running, I go to bed and wonder if I spent any quality time with my kids that day. “Mother’s guilt” is rampant in our house!

But not today. Just like the video, my children see beyond my shortcomings, they don’t hold grudges or remember what happened yesterday or an hour ago, they remember things that make them feel happy. Tonight I can have a guilt free night.

Secretly I am also chuffed that they share the same loves I have for Lego, jigsaws, baking and especially cuddling and laughing.  Although a recent birthday cake request for a Lego Head did test my love for baking!!