So it looks like we’ve skipped a whole season and summer has started today. It’s been the hottest April day since 1949 and it’s been blissful. Its strange to think a month ago we were snowed in!
The sun can change everything so here’s a list of things I’ve done today on our first hot and sunny day of the year…
I’ve dressed the children in their summer uniform, I love the cuteness of summer uniforms, a gingham dress for Little Miss and grey shorts for Little Man. We didn’t need coats today either.
At work, I changed my lesson plan and took my class outdoors to do their lesson. It was spontaneous and fun and turned out to be a really good lesson, sometimes you just have to go with the idea and embrace where it takes you.
Instead of heading home, I took Little Man for an ice cream and a walk whilst we waited for Little Miss to finish her music club after school. We admired the blossoms and looked for other signs of spring, Little Man played in the little brook and I may have dipped a toe into the water.
As soon as we got home the children changed into shorts and t-shirts after school. Is there a simpler outfit and I love all it symbolises, sunny days and outdoor playtime.
During the afternoon, Mr S had set up Swingball in the garden after it had been stored away for winter and we all played it in the garden before tea.
After tea, Little Miss and I went for a walk on the beach, the outdoor café was busy with people enjoying a drink in the warm weather and the beach was filled with people enjoying a bonus play. The atmosphere was so relaxing and happy.
When we got home, I sat in the garden and read. My summer soundtrack were the birds chirping and the hum of people happy pottering around in their gardens and outside.
There is no doubt that I am a summer person and a day like today just fills me with happiness and sparkles. Here’s hoping for a wonderful summer in 2018.
Being quite small and having quite wide feet, clothes and shoe shopping can be frustrating and disappointing. However, I love a bag and am always on the search for the holy grail of handbags. Buying a new handbag makes me happy and is my guilty pleasure, ‘guilty’ as I don’t always reveal the true price! My best handbags are an everyday green leather tote from Boden, I no longer use it daily as the leather is worn and battered after years and years of use but the colour, size and style were perfect and a beautiful vintage silver bag I found in a charity shop which I use for special occasions.
My current favourite is a large, navy bag from Clarks, I would prefer a better material but the size, colour and style suit me well. I also keep a small, bright bag in it which is perfect for keys, a purse and my mobile for the school run etc..
My bag is my mobile office and I try to have all I need in it. Today my bag contains
A zip Filofax for keeping myself organised and plans. It also doubles as a card holder for loyalty cards, stamps, membership cards etc..
A small cosmetic bag full of essentials – NYR
A spare shopping bag – Eden Project print
A purse containing cash and my bank card- Cath Kidston
A pencil case containing stationery essentials – Emma Bridgewater
Water bottle, sometimes I swap this for an insulated cup if I’m likely to want a hot takeaway drink.
Sunglasses for driving or if I feel a migraine coming on.
My Kindle, I am often waiting for a child to finish a club and have learnt to fit in 5 minutes reading wherever I can.
I also have a pack of tissues in the bag which is missing from the photo.
My cosmetic bag is key and gets transferred to my gym bag, rucksack for days out etc.. It is my mum kit!
Bach Rescue Remedy, because some days just become a rescue remedy kind of day.
Hair bands, I have short hair but my daughter always needs one.
Inhaler for my son.
NYR travel rollerstick, I get bad travel sickness and roll this on pulse points for journeys.
Liz Earle face spritz to refresh my skin and a little pick me up.
NYR defence hand spray (this is amazing, it lasts for ages and feels and smells so much nicer than the antibacterial gels)
In the summer this bag will also contain a mini bottle of sun tan lotion.
I like feeling organised and in control with a well packed bag, I can deal with problems as they arise and use any unexpected free time well. I suppose my bag is my super hero’s cape, wearing it I can do anything!
As the children become older, I find my role in the holidays changing. From doing and being with them all the time they are now trying new experiences independently. This holidays they’ve been climbing and on a tennis camp on their own. Well nearly on their own as on both occasions I’ve been on site as it’s been too far to simply drop them and go back home, it’s a 20+ mile round trip to our nearest sports centre, that’s rural life! I like that the children are trying new skills and doing things they enjoy but I’m also trying to keep a balance too so there are family trips which we all participate in and then relaxed times at home for Lego building, DVDs, play dates and baking. As Mr S has been home I’ve also had a date with each of my children, we’ve been to my gym where we’ve swam and enjoyed a jacuzzi and sauna.
This holiday has given me some unexpected time for myself, the sports centre has a nice café and with my Kindle and note book for plans I’ve been able to relax and think whilst the children have been busy. As the children get older, holidays are becoming more relaxing and restful and we’re all feeling the benefits.
As another day’s plans for the holidays are changed due to the wet, grey weather I simply have one plea this morning, come on Spring do your thing. Lets see some blossom, feel the warmth of the sun on our faces, play on the grass, wear sunglasses and a flirty skirt, hear the birds, enjoy lighter days and simply have a skip in our step. Spring its time to shine…..
For Little Miss one of the delights of school holidays is painted nails. In the days before she breaks up Little Miss will be deciding on the shade and counting down the minutes until she can have her manicure and varnish.
Earlier this month I did a Body Shop order and needing to spend £1 to get free delivery I searched for a product at this price and discovered a nail art pen in the sale for this exact sum. OMG we are loving this tool and it’s becoming one of the best pounds I’ve ever spent!
After our first few experiments with dots and stripes, we progressed to a simple flower this holiday. We have our own nail art inspiration board on Pinterest and have big ideas for the coming holidays, special effects including marbling (bubble wrap, genius idea) a fruity theme for the summer, Halloween art for October etc..
I suppose nail art and make up are becoming the new crafting for tweens, with the skills being transferable experimenting with colour, textures etc.. I am embracing nail art because it gives me much cherished time with my daughter, music in the background, the gentle touch of a hand massage, manicure etc .. and the time to sit still and talk. I’m sure in the coming years it’ll be a routine done with friends over teenage gossip so I’ll enjoy every little manicure until then and yes I’m proud to wear my daughter’s designs on my nails.
Hot cross buns are my favourite Easter treat. For me nothing compares to a simple, freshly baked bun with soft, slightly spiced dough and plump fruits, fresh from the bakers on Good Friday.
I’m not tempted by the supermarkets with their fancy flavours, to me a hot cross bun is the delight of a simple recipe. From childhood to adulthood, I have always queued up on Good Friday morning at the local baker for fresh hot cross buns, packaged in a white paper bag. A hot cross bun is one of life’s simple pleasures.
It’s funny how traditions and special moments can evolve. What started as a reaction to a bad day at work has become a weekly tradition and a highlight of my working week, Tuesday lunchtimes are walk and talk.
Over a year ago, my colleague and I were both having a v bad day, it was overwhelming and on a whim we decided to walk to a favourite cafe and get a takeaway coffee. When we arrived the smell and look of the daily soup was too good so we swapped for this and since then every Tuesday lunchtime we go and collect homemade soup and bread from our little cafe. It is the best cafe I know, the food is amazing and it’s always full of locals so invariably we stop and chat to a neighbour or friend too. However we never stop for lunch it’s always takeaway as my colleague and I walk and talk. We have resolved so many of our department’s problems on these weekly walks, planned special events and thought of new ideas. Sometimes we’ve been joined by colleagues who are always welcome and they too walk and talk .
Tuesday’s walk and talk is an inspiring and calming hour in our week, it’s the only day I take a lunch break and definitely helps keep balance in my working week. It’s useful as we have never returned with something unresolved and always feel so much better for fresh air and a healthy hearty soup. Tuesday’s walk and talk is a simple pleasure in a busy working life.