Friday, 7 July 2017

Life Lately

This week we've just had the end of "Birthday season" as I've come to term the month between early June - early July in our house.
In this month my three kids all turn a year older, my husband, my sister, two nephews, godmother and brother in law do too, and my parents celebrate their wedding anniversary.

I am pretty sentimental, the week before each kid's birthday I start thinking "this is his last Tuesday being x years old", gazing at them while they sleep, taking lots of photos and marking their heights on the doorframe. It's a killer. Though they wreck my head every day I still love them being small and cute and needing me to put on their shoes. Someday not so far away everyone will be able to get themselves a drink of water, get dressed and out the door with not too much fuss.

I'm mourning the baby years already. Our baby turned two this week. She is almost potty trained (by herself, I'm far too lazy to do that for her), she picks out her clothes in the morning, her shoes, brushes her teeth (almost), she's copying everything I do and seems to be growing up with no pauses. In contrast to my eldest, who seemed to need a nudge into every new phase of independence.

I don't know if this is a girl / boy thing, or a 3rd child / 1st child thing, but it's scary fast for me. Our girl goes for a walk pushing her own baby in a pram, "reads" books and navigates YouTube like a pro.

We are definitely done with three, and thanking our lucky stars we have them. I'm turning 40 next year (started this blog 6 years ago this September) and I am eager for the next phase of my life to kick in. I have a taster of it at the moment: working at my dream job at The Wellness Clinic (above) -,  getting time out with friends, picking up new interests, reading new books... and I know I'll have more and more time for myself in the next few years as my kids reach new levels of independence. Despite homeschooling.

Which is going great. We don't take a break for the summer, as our approach is built into our daily lives, we see learning opportunities everywhere. At the breakfast table today we were working out a maths problem as it had featured on a radio interview for example. And everyone gets involved, and everyone learns out of the same activity. Later today we had "golden time" which is a phrase borrowed from my primary school teaching years which originally meant "play what you like for a while" but in our house it means "sit quietly and read a book" and it's working! I sat with Nicholas Nickleby, the first Dickens I've read since my teenage years, my eldest sat with an Enid Blyton from my childhood and the younger boy picked The Cat in the Hat as Dr Seuss is his preferred author at the moment. The 2 year old walked around opening and closing doors, but we got a few good minutes peace and reading time after lunch.

In other news I'm on a mad DIY buzz here. I have filled in every crack in our interior walls, and have bought paint to do a kitchen wall pale pink and my wardrobe and chest of drawers pale grey and cream. I'm nesting in the hopes that some year soon I'll have a room to myself to chill out in. Instead of a book-strewn, shoe-filled den of upturned baskets and boxes, and that's AFTER the big clean-up of last week... I just want some SPACE!!!

After my talk at Mum Talks last Tuesday in Leeson Street

I'm meeting all kinds of wonderful women through work, and feeling inspired to add new strings to my bow. A research project I have considered for a while got a good start made yesterday and I'm hopeful that in a year or so I will have it finished to share with you all. I don't want to give any more details, sorry, as A. I don't want anyone to get there before me! and B. I don't want you asking me about it in case I put it on the long finger...

Lastly, I'm re-evaluating my relationship with sugar. Yes, it does require that serious a statement. I think it's safe to say I am a sugar addict. I've made all the excuses for years but I think it's time to cut back. Way, way, back. I want to get to the stage where I can take or leave it, not NEED it every day. I am a big fan of cake, and chocolate, and do try to make healthy versions to eat at home, but I still feel I eat too much sugar. Vanity too wants me to lose the last few kilos and feel as fit as I can be. Also my autoimmune disease is niggling at me and I know with less sugar it would be nonexistent. So lots of good reasons to ditch the white stuff.

I've read the I Quit Sugar books and find them inspiring on lots of levels, so they have been my catalyst for this mental shift. I don't deal well with forbidden foods or deprivation on any level, so this is a change I'm going to have to make slowly, as I did with going organic, so that I barely notice the changes I am making.

Our garden has had a makeover in the last few months. We dumped the 8 foot trampoline after 5 great years, sowed grass over the bald patch and now have a lovely lawn out the back. We planted a wisteria in an archway, laid a patio (don't you love the "we" - it was all my dh's work) and planted a herb garden. We have plans for the front garden too, which we'll get to in time. Now we are able to sit out and enjoy the garden as we'd always wanted to, with candles and visitors and long summer evenings. It's bliss.

We've been camping twice this summer and hope to go twice more. It's a great holiday with young kids, as they run wild all day, sleep all night and we can chill and chat to other adults in the evenings. The fresh air is so lovely and really appreciated when we live so close to the city centre. The worst bit of course is the packing to go, the unpacking when you get there, then the packing up again and the unpacking once home...

I could go on about other random stuff, but if I don't finish here I'll never get this published. Hope you and yours are all well and enjoying the summer so far. Let us know what you've been up to in the comments please,

Nee x


  1. Niamh you are an inspiration - I have followed your blog since I saw you on that crappy show where you took on the even crappier presenter. You make it all look easy - but you are also so honest too from behind the scenes!!! Today it felt good to read that your kids can wreck your head - you put so much energy, thought and love in to your parenting so it's refreshing to hear that it is not always perfect. I am really so looking forward to learning from you as your business grows. My aim is to get to a workshop and get some friends to go too!! As mothers, we can only benefit from from your strong self care message. Congratulations Niamh!

    1. Etta, you don't know how much that means to me. I am so delighted to have had your comment tonight. I hope to meet you in real life some day! Yes, my kids are challenging at times, but whose aren't! I hope I'm sharing enough of the realities as it is all too easy to smile in every photo and then people think you have a charmed life. You are very kind to take the time to comment, I appreciate it xx

  2. So good to hear from you again!

    1. Thanks Lynn! Likewise, and deighted it's only a few weeks til your return! xx


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