Happy Mother’s Day

Howdy Y’all,

Happy Mother’s Day. I know that this date varies dependent on country because hell knows it would be too sensible to make it all on the same day. Before I get comments reminding me of my British roots and it would be treason to abandon them, I beg upon your mercy to remember that my daughter is American born and to date raised, so to  ensure she feels well adjusted we celebrate the US date of mother’s day, although  I am always happy to celebrate more than one.

Today is my fifth mother’s day and as I reflect on that fact I thought I would share some of my thoughts and feelings on motherhood. These are purely off the cuff and a stream of consciousness.

  1. The days are long but the years are short, never a truer statement said. Some days I feel like I am pulling a jumbo jet up K2 in a pair of high heels, but then I sit down and think how is this my fifth mothers day!
  2. You will develop an addictive personality usually to coffee or wine and if you are truly successful both.
  3. If you have a plan, trash it. You can be the most organized person on the planet but children are unpredictable beasts, they have a mind and feelings of their own. There are times and days where all the planning on the planet will not stop a melt down. Trust me I have been their. I still think about those poor peoples ear drums on that flight ….
  4. Love, unconditional love it is mesmerizing, life altering and breathtaking all at once and it grows deeper and stronger as time progresses.
  5. You learn more about yourself, I lie not when I say mothering is a challenge it will take you to the brink and beyond, whether it is sleep deprivation, growing pains or they are being a stinker with prerogative, you will learn more about your patience level, selfishness and  tolerance than any school room will teach you.
  6. You will see yourself. There is nothing more frightening than when you see yourself staring back at you. The wonder of genetics.
  7. They are always watching, children are like a shadows, whatever you say, do, they are ready to recreate at the most inappropriate moments.
  8. Judgement, I was one of those stuck-up young women who actually thought things like “when I am a mother, I won’t.” I mean what a stupid person I was. Any mother knows that this mantra never applies because being a mum is beyond challenging and the last thing anyone needs is judgement.
  9. Consistency, I remember my mum telling me this one and she was right. Consistency is the biggest challenge as a mama, there are days when you are on your A game and having a consistent approach and parenting is easy and then their are the days when that fourth espresso is not hitting the mark and the appeal of letting your child have candy for breakfast or an extra hour of TV is what you need.
  10. Parental club, this club is non discriminatory it is that solidarity we all feel. It is the unspoken nod of the head or sympathetic head turn which says. WE KNOW, WE HAVE BEEN YOU AND THANK GOD IT IS NOT ME TODAY.

I am beyond lucky to be a mother and I thank God for giving me the blessing of my happy daughter. She is my greatest legacy and I appreciate every moment we get to experience and learn life together. To all mother’s in whatever form that is, wherever in the world you are. Happy Mother’s Day. To those of you who may find this day difficult you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Have a wonderful week friends.

Ta ta for now,

Kx

Happy Birthday Little L &Wth World?

Howdy Y’all,

Firstly happy Monday, this post is late today because I spent most of last week sick and this weekend was about my daughter and priorities. Yes she is another year older, three today,where have those three years gone? We have done lots  I have aged what feels like a century,but bizarrely it feels like only yesterday I was driving with Mr L and Mummy L to the hospital. That little 7lb 3oz bundle of love is now a very sassy, independent, sweet, funny and bright young lady. She lives for Disney Princesses and Tutu’s but loves Lego and bricks. I feel this year acutely because we only moved a few months ago and don’t have the infrastructure that we have had in previous years. (It takes time to make friends!) This meant we didn’t have a party, although our great friends came for tea yesterday and she had a ball. This is the Debbie Downer for the way we live, it also hurts that she is far away from family and long term friends, but one has to “suck it up.”

I have been in a reflective mood this week, (which often happens in birthday season.) I am concerned about the world Little L is growing up in. It seems so apt I am feeling this way, when my daughter is celebrating her birthday the day before history could be made, with the US potentially electing its first female President. I have never made this blog political and I don’t wish to start. Those who know me personally will know I have held an elected political office during my lifetime, so it is a passion of mine. I have always welcomed healthy debate, differing opinions, educated and informed reason. I have dreamt of the time when being a women would not be noted in political office because it would be the norm. That has not come as quickly as I imagined, frankly I think it is disgraceful it has taken till 2016 for a major contender for President to be a women. I do not think the gender, ethnicity or sexuality of a person should determine whether they are fit for office, more their moral grounding, experience and work ethic. Here I face my problem. I want to be excited that potentially for the first time in my life and Little L’s young life we could see women running three of the major Western nations. I want Little L to see that the glass ceiling is smashed, I want her to see that the world is her oyster, but my problem is that I want her to see these things and be able to achieve these things not by degrading herself in a process which has no moral compass .

As a mother I work and try hard to teach Little L right from wrong, to be kind to others, be respectful and understand why someone is being mean. I try to teach her that often when people do something unkind it is because they are hurting or unsure. It is very difficult to teach these lessons when the potential leaders of her nation have such blatant disregard for these simple lessons. Honestly how low can people sink? I am very proud to be a guest of this country, I am often touched by the friendly and welcoming nature of my friends and neighbors, good people, people like us trying to teach their children decent values for which humanity should stand. I am genuinely disturb that my three year old hears the kind of vocabulary and slurs which have been used this campaign season in the regular media. Words and accusations that I can not even type they are so disgraceful. Even in my neighborhood (and it is a very decent one) there has been vandalism of peoples property which my daughter could see and heated dialogue about sign stealing. I think this has been the most hostile and angry campaign I have seen in my lifetime. Why can people not have healthy debate? Why is it not ok to disagree with each others ideas but still remain friendly and show each other respect? When did it become ok to vandalize, steal and shout abuse at people?

I hope after tomorrow whatever the outcome people can accept the result, move forward in peace and unity. I pray the same thing for my own country with Brexit, the country spoke and the majority rules, it may not have been my wish but part of being a grown up is accepting outcomes and moving forward. After all “you win some and you loose some.” For Little L’s sake I do hope we are not faced with another campaign of personal disrespect and anger. It is so disengaging. I believe so many people have been turned off by this constant news cycle of slurs. For young people this is not ok. I mentioned earlier I wanted to raise Little L to be socially responsible and interested in international development,it worries me that this sort of behavior will cause apathy and disinterest and ladies lets remember what women went through to get the vote. We want a youth engaged, energized and caring about the worlds future. So I pray perhaps naively that after tomorrow we can move forward together standing together, upholding the simple lessons which  we teach our babies.

So sorry this turned into a little of a tirade, but it has been bubbling away. I’m off now to wrap the last of Little L’s presents and to fetch her from preschool, it is raining today and she has been so tired with all the fun of the weekend. I think we will curl up with a new movie on the couch, I am going to cuddle her (if she lets me) and try and relive this special time three years ago, when I was given my greatest blessing and teacher ever. I’m going to hug her and keep her warm safe and young for as long as possible, so that she doesn’t have to be exposed to some of the dark offerings which have been displayed in these past few months.

Ta Ta for now.

TLLx

That dreaded word SNACKS

Howdy Y’all,

Hope you are doing well and congratulations it is Friday, you have made it through another week!! Today I wanted to share something mummy related which had made my life a little easier, as I navigate this rocky road of parenthood. As Little L has grown that magic word SNACK has grown infamous. I would go as far to say as that it ranks as one of her top words, NO being the most popular (obviously.) Snacking had never really been a massive issue earlier on with Little L, she has always been a good eater. Recently I have  been noticing, with growth spurts, more socializing with peers and her increasing independence of spirit the desire to snack is on the increase. I need to preface because as Mr L likes to point out I have an inclination to explain myself (so here goes 😄) I am not a snack tyrant . I’m not against them, I love a snack, I’m hardly Kate Moss but I also want to teach Little L healthy habits and to make good choices. I basically follow the mantra, everything in moderation. I’m also proud enough to admit that I have used snacks to pacify Little L when I need her to just keep quiet for a few more minutes and when Daniel Tiger on the cell phone no longer works.

So dealing with this increased desire to snack has made me take more responsibility in looking into what is in toddler snacks. (OMG! Another post on that!) Before I receive a barrage of information on what a healthy snack is etc. I’m fairly clued up but there is only so much fruit and veg you can give your little one. Plus when Little L is at the park with other kids and they are eating Goldfish or Animal Cracker (both yum) another round of cucumber sticks might not hit it. Other mummies will also know the perils of the sippy and snack cup. Yup we have all been there, two cups full of identical liquids or snacks but it always tastes better in the cup belonging to the other child, which you can somewhat stomach when you know the other child! But I often find there is that spare cup belonging to no man floating around the park 😜.

I remember reading a while back in some diet article about breakfast cereal, generally people eat at least double the recommended portion of cereal per day because they don’t bother to measure the recommended portion size. This got me thinking. When buying snacks for Little L purely for convenience I tend to buy snack already portioned out. This is more expensive and sometimes not possible, especially when you buy some of the smaller organic brands. So a couple of weeks ago I thought I would look into the recommended snack portion for littlies and the standard seemed to be roughly 30g. If your like me, trying to cram too many things into a too smaller time frame, you are often running for the door thinking coffee, key, purse, phone, diapers, wipes, drink, child and SNACKS!! I’m usually rushing out and don’t have time to consider the correct portion of something. So I have started portioning the snack basket when I buy them and I have been really impressed with how it works. I am more aware of how much she is having and I noticed it’s enough. It is also really helping with decision making because I allow her the option of one of another. I basically measure out the recommended portion in a zip lock back (snack size) then either write on the bag with a sharpie or clip all the bags together with a peg or bulldog clip. I also do this with fruit and veg in the fridge. The only snacks I don’t do this is with is the freeze dried fruit I buy because I find the foil packets keep it fresher. Although this system takes a little time I have found I feel better and for housekeeping I can see much quicker what we are out of. If you are a Costco shopper and buy in bulk this is another way of buying the bigger boxes and still managing portions. Some of you might feel zip locks are expensive but you could reuse and honestly whether it’s Costco or a grocery store they usually have coupons or great deals on zip lock bags. (Especially at this time of year!)

I might be late to the party of course, and you are all doing this as standard. I wanted to share and surprisingly Little L has not been quite so snack obsessed this week, maybe an impending growth spurt. Snacking has been one of my learnings as I navigate this journey of motherhood. I am so blessed to have such fantastic and responsible mummy friends who also care about snacking and who humor my uptight British tendencies. I won’t even bore you with how I expect Little L to sit down while snacking, no eating while running or playing (beginning to relax this one.) Poor Little L it will be a miracle if she can grow into a civilized and contributing member of society with me as a mother.

I have rambled.

Happy Weekend

Ta Ta for now

TLL x

 

The essentials, love these scales.
The essentials, love these scales.
Yummy snacks!
Yummy snacks!
Neat & tidy snack basket
Neat & tidy snack basket