Category Archives: children

A Craft A Day.

I realised the other day that I have become bogged down with day to day stuff and have sort of forgotten the joy of creating art and craft for the sake of it.   Over the Christmas holidays I had the constant company of my youngest who is also very creative, and watching her flip from writing to textile craft to drawing to beading and then restarting the cycle, reminded me of what I am missing.  Just the joy of doing something that doesn’t have a defined goal and objective at the end of it.   So she and I had a craft afternoon together when the others were out and/or at work and it was such a good soul-food experience that I have decided to make sure I do something creative every day, and on days when I don’t have time I will definitely do something creative!    Like my little one (who turned 11 yesterday so isn’t so little), my loves are textiles, drawing, paper craft and writing.

Actually she and I are very similar in lots of ways but as her exposure to some really quite challenging crafts has been a lot earlier than mine, so I am expecting she will be far more accomplished than I was, should she want to be.   She is an accomplished seamstress and is a complete whiz on her little sewing machine.  And watching her wield scissors and fine needles is something to behold.    Just lately she has developed a passion for creative writing, which is helping her no end in her quest to overcome the ravages of Dyslexia (spelling, word formation, reading, etc).   Also I have just noticed her craft and sewing box is bigger than mine…hmm, looks like I have competition 😀

So, anyway, as I was saying, a craft a day is my aim, for now at least, until I can get my head back into how much I enjoy it mode again.   I started with textile crafts in the holidays but have moved onto my more recently favoured (thanks to university) paper craft.

Fits neatly into the palm of your hand.

Fits neatly into the palm of your hand.

Above is the little paper dog I made last night.   And below is my lil’un on her sewing machine.

My daughter making a little felt pocket.

My daughter making a little felt pocket.



Yes, They Are All Mine.

And no, they don’t have different dads.

Over the years I have had many a strange look from the general public while out with my brood.   When they were younger we did take on the appearance of the Pied Piper with a gaggle of little rugrats trailing behind, but these days it is much less likely that we are out all together, so I had forgotten the age old questions and stares.    These days, the only regular evidence I have of them is my huge trolley full of food as I make my way around my local Aldi store once a week.   Perhaps mildly more offensive than the sidelong stares have been the comments regarding their parentage, although in all honesty, you’d have to be blind not to see the family resemblances in them all.  And, what does it matter anyway? The is reality, most people have been happy to see my small tribe, and even more so when they have spent time with them and observed their relatively good behaviour.

So, today is weekly trolley dash day.  I have got into the habit of planning meals for the week and writing shopping lists as it really helps when you’re on a budget.  I work out before hand how much I can afford to spend each week, and plan meals accordingly.   This means having to know at 6am on a Wednesday morning what food I’ll need for the week, so that I am ready to head to the supermarket as early as my youngest will allow (ie, when she’s gone to school).   Keeping children fed is a bit of a mission, as is keeping clothes clean and the house liveable.   I have realised that to manage all that, on top of my own work means I am up half an hour earlier now, than I was when I was at university full time.   It is just as well I am a workaholic, and that I enjoy it!  😀

Possibly the strangest thing of all in this house full of teenagers is how quiet it often is.  They are all so busy doing their own thing/working/studying/at college and school that it is easy to forget they were ever charging around screaming and shouting, or that I ever had to herd them all up and get them into the bath and bed.  Sometimes I miss the hustle and bustle of small children.  But mostly, I don’t.  (Peace mannn….).

So, yes, they are all mine, and my cupboards and refrigerator are full again, but not for long.


Ok I am the first to admit I am a routine junky.  In part it is because I am a parent, but most of it is to do with learning differences and the coping strategies I have put in place to help me function ‘normally’.   You know those people who have post its all over the place to remind them of things? Well, that’s the same sort of thing, except for me I need all my ‘post its’ to be in one or two very safe places.   I am, by difference, a very organised person, but still prone to leaving keys/purse/boots/phone in unusually random places, despite each of these items having a very specific home.

So, today I am playing catch up as my weekend’s organisation was slightly (very) thwarted by an arrangement I wasn’t aware of yesterday.  People who know me well will know I need to be very clear about arrangements, and may well ask for the same details in a number of different ways, just to ensure my brain has processed it all correctly (my youngest daughter and son are both just the same, which can be frustrating for those who get fed up with the being asked for the same information over and over again).  So, a passing suggestion will remain so until I have digested it, talked about it, mulled it over, and agreed to it.   So, this passing suggestion happened yesterday, and it was a lovely day for it, even though it messed up my OCD type organisation for the weekend.   See, even I can cope with changes! Most of the time.

What brought me to mention this was a question I have been asked ‘How do you cope with time away from your favourite person?’  Well, that’s something I do on a daily basis, so actually thinking about how I cope means a trip back to the days of old when I learnt how to deal with those sorts of separations.   I am talking about my children of course.   So, each time one of them started school I have had to deal with a new form of ‘missing’ to cope with that particular person.   As they are all different, they have all required a slightly adaption to the change, usually brought on by their own adaption to the change.   My youngest son found leaving me very difficult so there were plenty of tears to deal with, whereas my middle son, after the first day or two, walked off without batting an eyelid.   Needless to say, I found it harder to cope with my youngest son’s misery, than my middle son’s delight at new adventure.

Now we are all dab hands at saying good-bye in the morning, and there are no more tears, although having a houseful of teenagers means there are lots of bleary eyes and moans.  But they’re old enough to know I’ll give them the usual ‘maybe you need to go to bed earlier/get your homework done sooner/eat something sensible for breakfast’ as lets face it, you can’t really tell teenagers anything.  It doesn’t mean I don’t miss them, as I still do, it just means I have got used to being apart from them.  That time will carry on increasing as they get older and move away from home, but I am sure I will always miss them, no matter where they are, and how long they are away for.  But oh imagine the peace…and the tidiness…every cloud has a silver lining. 😉