Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Time out for the soul

I realised something a long time ago and therefore it is completely necessary that I obey this, whenever humanly possible.
Solitude.
I like it.
I'm not saying I'm a loner and I don't like people (although various individuals recently have tested this theory!). I think most people are very nice and I can be quite sociable. Yet I do crave my own space. Sometimes I absolutely have to be alone.
For instance, recently on our family holiday to Cornwall, it was great fun to share a house with seven others, the holiday home was frequently filled with laughter and happy vibes. However, I was equally content pottering around on my own, in our bedroom, listening to Ella Fitzgerald and drinking wine. Every day I realised these precious twenty minutes or so, whilst choosing my outfit for the evening, were compulsory to my well-being. Erm, some days it was even longer than twenty minutes or so, as I decided to enjoy a bubble bath and check out Instagram.
And life is far more relaxing, now that Tommy is at that age when he can be trusted with other children and adults. What I mean is, I am not constantly in fear he is in danger and about to topple into a fireplace, or cry when I leave the room.
This solitude lark was ever so appreciated during our second summer holiday to Suffolk. This time it was just me, Mark and Tommy. The famous three.
Some mornings, in our holiday cottage, child and husband were snoring away, and because I can no longer lay in, I would trudge downstairs to an empty lounge. Bliss. Time to catch up on Period Living magazine or sit outside in the quaint garden listening to the birds, lost in my own little world.
It was harmonious. I was content knowing they were safely sleeping and I would soon be bustling about in the kitchen cooking bacon and eggs for my tribe.
How lucky we were to have the yearly family holiday followed by a slower and quieter pace in Suffolk, for just the three of us. Oh except on our last day, where we met our four friends and three children at the beach and lunched and played together. It was the perfect end to a lovely time.
With some much appreciated, time out for the soul.

Here are our pictures from Aldeborough.

The lovely cottage.




When you spy a summer house in the garden.


Tommy loved it inside.


So did Mark and I when it was Pimms o'clock.


The cottage was a short walk from the beach.



And Aldeborough is a short drive away from Southwold.



The last day, meeting up with friends, playing games on the beach.



Our friends were staying in Thropeness. The most picturesque village.


Messing about by the river.



Loved watching the kids running about, inventing their own games. Missing you already Suffolk!

Thursday, 12 September 2019

It's all very Midsomer Murders

“It’s all very Midsomer Murders,” said auntie Lesley.
"As long as nobody is actually murdered," said I.
It was the 140th year of the village fete and flower show. And guess who was there?
Scarlet Moss Vintage. Otherwise known as, me and my little vintage shop. And mum and son came too, then auntie Lesley joined us. My auntie won a bottle of red wine in the raffle, how about that for a great Saturday afternoon.
The band was loud, the sun was hot, and as mum commented, "The beer tent is very popular."
As soon as the flyer was shoved through my letterbox, I knew I had to be there. You know how much I love a fete. Plus, it was the perfect opportunity to showcase my vintage, near my home, cross the road, stop when you see the village hall and church.
Not to mention, all proceeds from stall owners and contributions from entrance fee, gratefully received with regards to funding the local church.
How could I not participate?
Oh it was a lovely day.
Tommy pretended he was master of his own stall. He spotted a spare table next to us, set up camp, positioned Godzilla, Mr Sharky, Spider-Man rucksack, and dinosaurs colouring in book, with prices scribbled from his pen set. (I explained in vain that £10 for a colouring in book was a little high.)
There was a slight alarming moment when the vicars son spied Tommy's toys, and with eyes wide open, raced over to purchase. Luckily mum saved the day and explained the situation.
And one of the highlights for me? Definitely when a pre-teenager expressed her love for my vintage painting and gazed at it lovingly.
"It's my birthday next Tuesday," said she, with pleading looks to her mother.
"Happy birthday for Tuesday," said I.
I will never win prizes for being a pushy shop owner. But I did encourage her take a closer look, to ensure it was everything she had dreamed of. It was, she literally could not part with it. With huge thanks to her mother, it was kindly brought for her 13th birthday present.
I can't tell you how much that meant to me. Sometimes I imagine the happy ending for my vintage, but it's absolutely best when I actually know the story.
All in all, the most memorable day. Albeit it very Midsomer Murders.

Preparing for the village fete.


Raring to go.


The vintage painting for the 13th birthday present.


Showing off the business card.


Prize flowers in the tent. You should have seen the size of the melons.

Monday, 9 September 2019

The one with Godzilla, and Mr Sharky came too

So we've holidayed in Cornwall for the past eight years.
Each year I try to define it by a memory. For example, there was the one where Mark and I slept on a blow up bed under the stairs. Don't ask. Or do, we were saving for our wedding and decided last minute dot com to join the holiday.
This year I thought long and hard about the word association, and I decided to stick with...Godzilla.
Because there was not a strange sleeping arrangement, or a pregnancy, or a child’s first holiday, or mishaps.
It rained, as usual, yet we still managed to sit on the beach, as usual. There were steep hills again, and we all complained about our calf muscles, again. We booked our favourite restaurants, we ate too much, we drank a little too much.
It was, a replica of many wonderful holidays beforehand, with nothing out of the ordinary. So for me, personally, it will be the year Tommy was Godzilla mad. I am not sure how long this phase will last, it's definitely a 2019 passion. I am not sure how or why it started but he's crazy about that atomic dinosaur. So crazy that he bought his two toy ones in his Spider-man rucksack. And made me make Godzilla sandcastles on the beach. Yes, they were tricky. Not to mention pretending we were Godzilla and chasing him, much to spectators delight.
Therefore, for 2019 it was the one with Godzila, and Mr Sharky came too.


This year's holiday home.



It rained, we shopped.



We tried to visit the beach as often as possible.











We visited the farm.




We visited Mark's mums memorial bench. This is the view from the bench.


We ate out every night, some of the nicest places with the prettiest views, plus we had breakfast on the beach three times. Boy do I need to go on a diet now.





I would like to add the wine glasses were full of apple juice. They insisted on drinking them in a wine glass. What are they like.


Thanks for having us again, Cornwall. See you next year.

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

School's out for summer!

Actually it's not. It's back to school tomorrow.
Alas, summer is over.
In the beginning the thought of the six weeks holiday was both daunting and exciting. Daunting, because I'm a full time working mum and holiday is limited. Exciting, because despite being a full time working mum it was Tommy's first summer holiday, and I was determined it would be fun and memorable.
One of the best bits was definitely the slow mornings. Not having to run around encouraging Tommy to dress, eat, visit toilet, whilst also checking homework, school bag, uniform, and trying not to scream at the top of my voice, "Come on! We'll be late!"
To be honest, I think I’ve said this every morning, during term time, but tried not to scream it like a mad demented demon, hence scarring my son for life. The thing with living so close to school, and having a child who will do anything rather than fall asleep, you are always nearly late for school. In fact, a few mornings we did run into the playground and escape through the reception gate before it was shut behind us.
Yes the slow mornings were great. Can I let you into a secret? One Tuesday we both stayed in our pjs all day! That was how relaxed we were.
Of course it was a juggling act. Some days I booked time off, other days Mark booked time off, some days Tommy visited my parents house and on others he visited his grandad. We had two family holidays, and the rest of the time Tommy was a dream whilst I tapped away on my lap top. On those days he coloured in and wrote in his summer holiday diary, was paid 50p per job for tasks such as watering the flowers, he watched films, built lego houses, and at lunchtime we played board games and had picnics. Then at 5pm we would go to the park or do a treasure hunt in the garden.
Somehow, it all worked out rather nicely.


First and last day at reception.


He's made some amazing friends and I can't praise his teachers enough.


School's out for summer! Love this photo, it always makes me laugh. I booked half day off work on his last day at school and all children and parents were invited to the park for inflatables and a picnic.


Then we all went to the local pub.


We joined the library. On this day we caught a bus with nanny to the next town and also visited the toy shop and tearoom.


The near by park held fun fairs. Tommy loved spinning around in a giant teacup and driving a giant turtle.



Sometimes all you need is your best friend and an ice-lolly.


We boarded a miniature railway with his nursery friend. Friends since they were two years old. Long may it continue.




We ate lunch and picked flowers.




Thank you summer for the best time.
Coming soon, our family holiday to Cornwall and Suffolk.