The fact that I’m writing this August update a few days into September may tell you all you need to know about how the last month of the summer holidays went. With just a few days left until Sam and Flo go back to school – or start school in Flo’s case – I am yet to feel the relief of “we made it” but am about to pat myself on the back for getting through it!
Keeping your children entertained and happy for six who weeks is a mission for anyone, but for a single parent like me let me tell you, it’s hard. Don’t worry, I’m not about to go into a rant of self-pity and negativity. I love my children to bits and love spending time with them. But there is a constant level of noise and conflict management that goes with having more than one child, and when you’re the only adult in the house there is really no hiding from that. Headspace is at a minimum and there is always someone wanting something from you.
For me, the best way to manage that is to keep them busy, plan lots of activities, trips away and play dates, but also to book in a few quiet days too. Scooting to the park or walking into town is sometimes more than enough to tire the wee ones out!
We started August on holiday in Devon. I have already written about our glamping trip with friends at Crealy and have a half-written post about the other things we got up to in Devon, like beach days, a trip to the National Marine Aquarium and cream teas. I have a few half-written posts in draft and hope to be able to spend more time on my blog in the next few weeks and finish them off. My writing has definitely taken a back seat over the summer and that needs to be fixed.
We also spent a weekend away camping at Just So festival, had a few trips into Leeds – educating them on good food and shopping – and done the whole school uniform buying thing. My daughter is so excited about going to school and wearing her new uniform, it really is so cute and I have no doubt that she will love it. She’s a sociable, friendly soul and little fazes her.
Last week we had a fantastic day out at a sports day in Hebden, near Grassington, with friends. The kids joined in with their first fell race, came fourth in the relay, and Sam and I made it to the final six in an egg throwing contest. What a revelation, throwing a fresh egg at one another from a distance is seriously a massively cheap thrill – especially when your partner is an eight-year-old with little coordination like mine!
We’ve been on plenty of walks, up on the moors where we live and down by the river, and I feel like Sam and Flo are starting to really love where we live now.
August has seen us hanging out with friends and relaxing at home – them more than me! – interspersed with trips to my parents’ and the odd sleepover, which is a lifesaver for giving me a break. I’ve tried to fit in as many runs as I can, with varying degrees of enjoyment but running definitely is something that keeps me sane when life is so busy.
I love September and its promise of new beginnings, it’s a much better time to start resolutions than January when it’s cold and dark, don’t you think? One of the first challenges it will bring for me is when I walk up Mount Snowdon next Friday night. I’m joining a team raising money for the hospice where my late husband Roger died, Wirral St John’s, and climbing the Welsh mountain overnight to reach the summit at dawn. I’ve raised more than £400 so far but would love to get to my £600 target, so if anyone would like to sponsor me you can do so here. The hospice has given our family so much and really helped to care for us all at the worst time in our lives.
I’m hoping to pack my camera and get some good photos so I can write about the experience afterwards. I’m checking the weather forecast daily though and it looks like rain, so fingers crossed it’s wrong! I’ll be working out if I have the right kit this week, I think I might need a new jacket and head torch as the only one I can find in the house is shaped like a shark!
Wish me luck and I’ll let you know how I get on. I hope August was good for you,
See more of our monthly posts if you’d like to – I’ve been doing them for more than two years!
This post is linked up with the Me and Mine project – hosted by Dear Beautiful, Bump to Baby, Capture By Lucy, Let’s Talk Mommy, Mummy Daddy Me and Tigerlilly Quinn and Our Life As We See It – where you take a photograph a month of your family all together.