This last week has been mostly uneventful. I have barely done the school run, seen anyone or stepped outdoors, due to most days being spent resting, snuggling and watching back to back episodes of Gilmore girls thanks to a stinking virus that caused me to revert back to my bed. Sickness…dizzy…painful muscles and lack of energy – its been both frustrating and rather miserable over here in my life!

I have these moments occasionally and my only saving grace in all of this was that I lost 4lbs, got to spend my time snuggling my baby and receiving many gummy grins, and ticking off a good chunk of the 7 seasons of Gilmore Girls I set myself to watch last year!

I fell in love with watching Gilmore Girls the first time around that it was aired over here, and have vivid memories of watching it daily during the latter weeks of my first pregnancy with Ethan. You either love it or hate it I think, and I am certainly a lover of that mother daughter pair!

Watching TV and movies are one of my favourite things to do, it just brings me joy (even when they are sad) and satisfaction. They are usually one of my go to’s to unwind and chill and a main factor in our date nights. I take a while to get in to box sets as they are so time consuming and I know I can get hooked and waste many an evening doing nothing but staying up late to watch “just one more episode”. But, in the past I have loved One Tree Hill, Suits (still working our way through season 5) and of course Gilmore Girls… Its no wonder then that I was rather excited to see it return to my life again via Netflix last summer and quickly bookmarked it for a time when I felt ready to watch back to back re runs, followed by the new season. I wanted to see the ones I’d missed way back when, see how it ends and how they have gone back to it – I actually couldn’t wait!

December was the perfect opportunity with wrapping gifts, packing bags and being so tired on an evening with all of my running around to tick off the first few seasons, and much to Mr Smiths dismay I again became hooked! I since have looked forward to the cold days indoors that come with January where I could curl up with my baby and a hot chocolate and catch up on more episodes. I decided over Christmas that I need to slow down a little more and at least once a week make the most of not having to be anywhere and just relax for maybe an afternoon – it would be good for my sanity and it would be something nice to take care of me before I am launched into the crawling and into everything baby stage.

I never anticipated that I would fall ill though and have that opportunity so soon. And whilst it was a burden to me and meant a rather boring week of doing not very much, I have had some lovely moments just laying in my PJs under the duvet (or wrapped in a blanket) with my snuggly little pal and watching hours of a much loved/fave TV series. I have been grateful for Mr Smith running the kids to school most of the week, grateful for little Alice being a snuggly baby (though breastfeeding when ill is rough), and especially grateful for having Netflix to give me something to do…hoping to resume normal life this week!

The Ordinary Moments
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As happens with most of my birthdays these days, I tend to go through a period of self evaluation leading up to the big day. I ponder on things such as “am I where I wanted to be at this age?” and “if not am I happy with the alternative?”, “Have I done what I hoped to since last year?” etc. I don’t really freak out too much anymore about getting older as I am learning that age really is just a number, and my 30’s have become a phase of life where I seem to be most comfortable in myself. I would say though that I panic more over how fast time is going generally and how there is so much I want to do with/in my life that I wonder if I will have enough time to get it all done. Does that make sense?

Since becoming a mum I have felt pretty accomplished in life and over time become content that this is life right now – raising kids! The growth of our family makes me feel I am doing great things by raising (hopefully) good humans and I see it as the best use of my time now. There are still many lists of countries I want to visit, life things I want to do, charities I want to work with and things I want to become educated in, but I know in time and year by year with my little goals and plans I will get there!

But being a mother also means that now there are moments before birthdays where I think my birthday potentially will be boring, or rather like any other day. I don’t live too near my family and my friends are either my sisters/sister in laws or all random people now who I share one to one relationships with as oppose to a tight knit group, so I almost feel like life has naturally shifted away from girly nights out and partying together. That to me is a bit of a shame and if i’m honest makes me a little sad as I do love a night with good friends, and at times I do wish more than anything for that again, but life shifted around a lot after loosing Poppy and with age too, it isn’t what it once was and that’s okay…I am happy for those in my life right now who make the effort and want to help me feel special, who love me and get together when we have the time, but mostly I am just grateful that (even if it was a reminder from facebook) people everywhere from my life took time this year to wish me a good day. I just love that about social media and it certainly made me feel blessed and loved, and I can honestly say that 32 was a joyful day!

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This birthday was joyful because that is exactly what I wanted it to be. I had a cake (surprise) with Nath’s family Sunday when we met for dinner, and I know something with my family will pan out soon. Friends hadn’t asked to do anything prior, so I didn’t bring it up and Nathan took the day off work. I didn’t want it to be like any other day and so I decided I would spend it with him – my bestie (and of course little Alice too), and it was an extraordinary day of lovliness! Being a new mum combined with motherhood generally could equate to a mad day like every other, but with some planning it was far from that, and so here’s what we did to help you see how to have an amazing birthday filled with fun even if you are “just a mum”!

1. Snuggles, songs, breakfast and dancing – This basically summed up the chunk of time between waking up and heading to school. The kids all came into our bed early and sang to me, kissed and cuddled me before giving me some chocolates, flowers and a mummy pig card! They were far more excited than me at that point and I just loved seeing how desperate they were to celebrate that day and that it was “mummy’s birthday” – It was perfect!

We had a lovely pancake breakfast which I made whilst we danced to birthday rap songs and “I’m feeling 22” by Taylor Swift (which I feel far from).

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2. Cinema – It has been way too long since we went to the cinema and I found out recently that almost every cinema has baby sessions where you can go with baby and its appropriate sound lighting and atmosphere for parents. And so off we went…only it wasn’t the baby showing at all, but Alice was AMAZING and we laughed our way through the whole film whilst I snuggled her and she slept…the film was brilliant and the whole experience was so much fun.

 3. We ate out…for lunch (or you could do dinner, though lunch is easier as most of the kids are in school). We went to Nandos and Alice chilled in her car seat whilst we enjoyed a lovely lunch with out crowd control in the mix.

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4. Bake a cake – When you’re the mum there isn’t usually anyone to do this for you, but it doesn’t mean you need to pay loads for shop bought either. I made mine the day before whilst Alice was napping and the kids watched a film after dinner. It was everything I had been dreaming of – Chocolate and peppermint frosting!

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5. Kid free shopping (kind of)…The plan was to go kid free shopping with just Mr Smith and Alice but sadly we had to go to the hospital to see a very sick family friend, and so that was put on hold. The idea was nice and maybe you can be more successful at it than I?

6. No house work! The house is a dump today but that’s okay. Nathan insisted I went out and had fun with him yesterday…doing things out of the ordinary to ensure it isn’t a mundane boring day like any other…and it was just that. No laundry to hang, no dishes to wash, no sweeping, bed making or any thing. The house was left and we drove in peace chatting and singing along to the radio!

So Mum’s, embrace the kids you have as the blessing they are and have a little dance party with them, make a special breakfast, cake and treats, and do something with your day you have been dreaming of! It doesn’t matter that you’re a mum now or whether family and friends are close. Fun and joy are created by us and by making some effort it honestly makes for a very happy birthday indeed! I have a gorgeous little family, a wonderful husband, brilliant family all over the place, my new little baby and pockets of friends I see here and there when we have the time who each bring great things to life – I am happy and I am excited for what I will accomplish at 32…

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