Holiday Time Is Here

17 August 2012

I'm going to be pressing the pause button on the blog; just for a couple of weeks. We're off on our summer holiday.

For the first time since having kids, we are travelling abroad. I don't know why, but since the kids we've got into the habit of holidaying here in the UK. But this year we fancied a change, so we are off to Charilla, Alcala la Real in Spain. 

Charilla is a small village where most of the locals work the olives and the rhythm of the day is laid back and quiet. I'm really looking forward the change of pace and scenery. We're flying to Madrid (so much cheaper and better flight times) so have a bit of a car journey ahead before we get to our retreat, but somehow I think it will be worth it. On the way back we will stop off for a few days in Madrid. After all, to just pass through it would be a missed opportunity.

The kids are SO excited, you wouldn't believe it. To them it is a huge adventure. Lily, spends a lot of time with her head in her atlas, so to travel to another country is a really big thing for her. She keeps on asking me to talk her through the journey; the airport, the flight, the four hour car journey. She is so thrilled by every detail. Arthur on the other hand has less of a grasp on what is to come. But he too is excited because he reckons he won't be taking a plane to Spain, but a rocket!

I'm sure that while away, I will gather many photographs and experiences that I will be sharing on this blog on my return. 

But until then, I'm off to catch some sun, spend some quality time with my gorgeous family, discover new places and slow down a little ...

Image via Bohemian Blues blog


14 August 2012

You see these little creatures here; they are Moshi Monster figures (aka. plastic toot). To my children they are the toy du jour; to me they are just plain old-fashioned bribery.

I know that bribing children is a no no. I don't applaud it, but with the current combination of pressing work deadlines, no childcare and the school summer holidays I have to confess to stooping to this ugly low level.

I've written posts on this blog in the past on the difficulties of running your own business (at our busiest time of year) during the school holidays. Year on year it doesn't get any easier. Like a typhoon on the horizon heading our way, there is nothing we can do other than brace ourselves and ride through it as best as we can. Every summer, we say never again. The mention of paid childcare get thrown around but I bat it away immediately: we managed without childcare for the last seven years, so I'm not going to give in now. Arthur will start school next September and that, I hope, should make work life much easier.

So this week, the children are having to entertain themselves somewhat and probably watching more television than I would ideally like them to, but I've found one of those little Moshi Monster figures is worth a morning of 'leaving mummy alone in the kitchen to work on the computer'.

My guilt is somewhat lighted by the knowledge that we are going on holiday very soon to a place with no internet connection and possibly no phone signal. Then the children can have me and their dad 100%. But a promise of a Moshi and an afternoon trip to the park in exchange for a few hours work-time is going to have to do for now.


10 August 2012

It's been a crazy busy week on the work front, but I did have a day off earlier in the week. Nothing too taxing, just staying at home with the kids catching up on chores and stuff. Lily had a friend over for a play and lunch. It seems that if you're seven having a friend over to play at your house is a big thing.

Not that long ago play-dates had what you might call a 'sell-by-date', in as far as after a certain time things often became fractious, loud, boring etc. But I must say all of Lily's friends who have been round this summer holiday have been a joy to have. Maybe it's an age thing. They disappear upstairs and quietly loose themselves in Moshi Monster books for ages, coming down every now and then to happily hang out and chat with the grown up. Plus they've all been lovely with involving a little brother in what they do when he ambles upstair to see what they are doing. It all makes for a happy unit. I even got to sit down on the sofa with a cup of tea and had a quick flick through a magazine; normally unheard of during the day.

The friend that had come to play earlier this week, had the previous day moved to a new flat with her mum. She excitedly told me all about her new home and how later that evening her mum's friend was joining them and the three of them were going to 'have a house warming party' that was strictly girls only.

Well, I told her that she couldn't possibly consider having a party without a cake. We made a lemon drizzle cake together and she took her baked pride and joy home with her.

The Beatles Or The Stones?

2 August 2012

It's a hard call isn't it? My quick fire response would be The Beatles; I've been listening to their music forever after all. But then I asked myself the question: These days, which albums do I pull out of our record collection to play more often than not? The reply would have to be The Rolling Stones. So there is my answer. What would yours be?

Here is one of my favourite tunes. My absolute favourite? Now there's a question I could never answer.