Swimming through Mud

Firstly, I will be apologising to my babies. Again! What I am about to write is not your faults. I love you both. I have written in no uncertain terms about that. Swimming through mud is just what insane moments sometimes feel like. Maybe like when you guys teeth. Or are sick. Or just cannot explain to me what it is that you want. I hate seeing your tears. I want to make it better. ALWAYS. People say “live in the moment”. I have always tried this. When you are just after picking up the phone to hear your baby has thrown up, or if they are constipated and you can literally see the problem but cannot help, or they have tumbled from a couch that you had no business letting them sit on and the instant swelling duck egg bruise teases you into thinking the irrational thought that their brain is exploding, then living in the moment is nausea inducing. I feel I am doggy paddling in muddy puddles and getting nowhere. As it stands, I am a pretty dreadful swimmer.

These are grey days. Literally. Rain has fallen since Christmas. Floods have abated only to return.People have lost their homes. It is likely this is adding to my difficultly to cope with some of the daily struggles.  Don’t get me wrong. I am coping. I have my home and I love it. I want to call a spade a spade however. My pretty home is beginning to feel more like Alcatraz at every waking moment. I am finding it rough going at times. Driving rain against the window pane was once a time I would cherish. Believe it or not. I lived in a city that was famous for rain. I had a friend there from Australia. I believed she must hate this incessant drizzle and miss home. No, as it transpired. She told me that when it rained, she curled up into a blanket and ate fried chicken. That is ten years ago. I still see hear rain and conjure up that image. I may have substituted fried chicken for other treats at various times, but the feeling still lived. I will always thank her for giving me joy in the rain. She is gone home to Australia however. I need her to tell me the next bit!  What do you do to save the day when the rain truly won’t go away, your babies are sick and teething, you have baked cupcakes, coloured, imagined and the cows are long home? When jumping in muddy puddles may be possibly taking your life into your hands?! 20160130_111020.jpg

These are actual photos from my area, not free downloads! That is the top bar from a five bar gate. Everything is wet. When it dries, gunge, green algae and a nasty slime paper every element of life. It is impossible to keep the dirt away. I am  punching imaginary walls in frustration.


I know it will pass. Everything that is a little  bit dreadful usually does. We will continue to make gingerbread men. Cry. Smile. Love.




Mommy/ Mammy Challenge

I am updating this post to give some others a chance to try the challenge.  I hope that you enjoy it!

I have been challenged to post three images that celebrate motherhood and what it means to me. This is definitely helping with my exercise in happiness!

Thank you to katystuff I am privileged to be nominated!

Challenge Accepted!

Let me first say I could wax lyrical all day talking about my babies. I must remember that the elements I don’t mention are not because they mean less. It is just difficult to pick! !

Image one



My first image is of a gift from a friend for our marriage. l love this wooden heart. The gifter was a student teacher that I tried to help in her time here. It is aesthetically pleasing,naturally beautiful and it represents what being a Mother is to me very purely. All encompassing, unconditional  love. My love for these children is so inexplicable  in its power that representing it with a large symbol hanging over the kitchen door is by no means hyperbolic. In fact it should be much, much larger.

Image Two!


Reading is my life’s pleasure. I am privileged to have a passion for books and a gift for language. Little Gigi has been exposed to books from birth and the set in this image are still centre of her day. I refuse to tidy them up and place them away as old Xmas decorations as they bring us such joy. Gigi gives one to everybody in the room, including Baby Betsy and brings reading into our day. It is wonderful to me to be able to share reading with my girls and see them get enjoyment from it.

Image three


This simple wooden music toy is innocent and natural. The purity and grace of children is what makes my day worth living. When I feel like raising babies is trying to knit with playdoh their wide innocent stare or their absolute dependence in your arms is so beautiful and absolutely devoid of anything malevolent. This toy was from Santa to Gigi. Every child that enters my home (there are a lot , we are a far reaching family! ) plays with this toy the most, bypassing the branded dolls and the impossible to assemble kitchens etc. It shows me that simplicity and innocence are so attractive and more beautiful than any created faux beauty. The most wonderful part of motherhood for me.

I must now nominate other wonderful Mums for this cathartic, fun challenge!  I am very new in the blogging world so I hope that others will take it upon themselves to do the same!

kymmycakes  and Krista

dearlilyjune dearlilyjune

Theclothesline Theclothesline

Relish being a Mum!









The White Rabbit




This morning the clock stopped in my kitchen. It was ten to eight  for three hours. I didn’t  realise until ten fifteen pm.

Strange things happened. Baby Betsy, who20160128_111748-1.jpg had slept from eight pm until six thirty am before looking for a drink, continued to sleep. I woke her to feed at half ten. We had her three month check up. This took twenty minutes, drives included. We came home. She is still asleep.

I sat down with Weetabix at quarter to eight. (I can’t be sure!). Had the whole bowl. Peaceful. Joyful. Calm. Dare I  risk more, I wondered ? Made blackcurrant and rhubarb tea. Drank. Sipped. SAVOURED. Had fuzzy warm feelings. Closed my eyes.Post dropping in the door made me jump at ten. I had slept! The magic pill that is rest! This is not an average day.


I first noticed the dormant clock when Mr Paper came for his tea break from milking cows.  I was startled. Not that the clock stopped. Just by how much I must live my life by it. One look at the time in such a wrong position almost made me uncomfortable. This is the girl who once partied until dawn and laughed at routine. Gone! I am suddenly the white rabbit.

‘I’m late! I’m late! For a very important date! ‘

My mantra. I have all day at my finger tips. Yet the clock rules my day and happiness.  It is nine am? Betsy should be asleep. Seven pm? What hasn’t Gigi had her bath? Twelve pm? Haven’t thought about lunch. More guilt! Life is the mad hatter’s tea party. This is not fun for me. I always hated that grinning cat.


Today however, the clock has stopped. I don’t believe that time has actually stood still. I don’t believe in Dr Who! There is no denying however that a spell has been cast. I was freed for a few hours from the pressures of time. In the domino effect that occurred, my family became liberated also. This white rabbit can relax.

The baby is smiling and cooing. I am rested and almost human, having satisfied several physiological needs that are usually touch and go in their consistency to be met. It is noon. I haven’t fixed the clock. Maybe I won’t!


Candy Land :My treats

Confectionary. Lovely, lovely sweeties. Such a weakness.


Am on my ‘morning out’. This is an occasion that I manage to acquire weekly at the moment. Betsy Paper is with Nana. Gigi is in playgroup. I am in the nearest town . Enjoying the freedom that travelling solo brings! One handbag. One person to safely take in and out of the car. One mouth to feed. Whereby we have a problem…this mouth feeds far too easily.

Talking about the handbag. I have released the Cracken that is changing bags when you are a Mammy! Step one in the happiness experience. I vow to wear at least one pretty item per week. Today it is my handbag. Nothing else fits…! But it does make life marginally pleasanter when I feel it on my shoulder on this morning free of responsibility. I recommend it.20160127_091829.jpg

You may have remembered my Apology Loop theory. It is this circle of guilt we feel as Mothers when we do things for ourselves. Well, I have just felt six guilt pangs as I write these words. Guilty that I like travelling solo. Sorry babies x Guilty that I enjoy my timeout. Am really, truly sorry. Bad that I have so much pleasure in a vintage piece of cloth. I don’t begrudge the baby bags. In fact, I have carefully chosen beautiful Spanish design ones. Yet I can’t help loving the fact my bag today holds a wallet, a brush, Caramax and a well thumbed copy of Persuasion!

Getting the morning off is a pleasurable routine that I have begun to rely on. However getting out the door is a nightmare. It’s not the  babies. It is me! I don’t want to walk away! What is wrong with me??!!   In fact the guilt is so strong,  I need to have solid ‘reasons’ to give for my pleasurable, indulgent morning of freedom. Which is why I am sitting in the middle of a very famous weight watching class …let us call them Gait Gnashers. Or Belly Bashers. So subtle!! I sit here. I weigh in. I leave. I head to the bookshop. I hit the cafe. Counteracting?  Probably. Necessary? God yes!! My leader is talking right now. I am hiding. Typing. Enjoying my morning off!

Candy Land is not a game I ever played. But it always sounded so attractive!  I can clearly remember the first proper craving I ever had for chocolate. The first time I felt the need to stand up and find the deliciousness for myself. I was so young , I had to ask my Mam for it. I remember her looking at me, a puzzled expression. I was a child who rarely ate anything. Goodies included. What had occurred?  Setting the scene.

It was a summer’s evening. One of those warm days when a shower comes along from the blue and you must return inside. How rude!! I was seven. I was on ‘holiday’ in my Granny’s house in the countryside. Myself and my cousins were big adventurers. Imagination led play was our skill. I now know that reading played a large role in our  abilities to make games from nothing. However, that day, the rain had put a stop to our gallop outside. When this happened, we retreated to the inside. Out came the books and comics. On this occasion, I had just spent pocket money on Roald Dahl’s ‘ Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’. The descriptions of Charlie’s indulgence in the sweet shop was so appealing to me, so effective. The words  were so powerful. Magical even. I went to my Mother looking for chocolate. I haven’t looked back since. Which is why I am sitting in Tummy Thumpers! ! Joking aside, it is a fabulous programme that works for me. In all honesty though, I know it cannot undo the hypnotic effect Roald Dahl placed on me in 1987. You know what? I don’t  want it to either!

So here I am on the morning off. My time in Candy Land. Next step? Handpick the treats. Maybe next time I will share them with you!


And the dish ran away with the spoon…

The Apology Loop

I think all Mammies must experience this. I feel you can get caught in this circle when chatting your friends,  family. It starts with a smile. All is fine! The babies are great. I am just a bit tired. When really you are thinking I want to go to bed for a 1000 years and what had Sleeping Beauty to complain about??? Look at the complexion she had when she finally awoke, and a beautiful man staring at her to boot!! But yes, you flash your  gritted teeth smile. Your poor well meaning guest. You have just admitted you might not be coping at the 100% mark. What happens next? The back tracking! Ah but they are worth it, you say. They are gorgeous, you pander.  The guilt! You admitted weakness! Sorry baby, you think, am so sorry you are beautiful, wonderful, everything  to me. There we have The Apology Loop. And it goes on all the time…I am even doing it now.

The lovely youngest Paper is asleep in the next room. Baby Betsy. She smiles all day except when convulsed with griping pain. I feel horrific at these times. The poor little sausage suffers.  I should only think about her. Yet I feel so guilty because I want to feel like myself again too. I can’t stop the selfishness bouncing through.

To get through the average day there are several things I rely on.

Mr Paper. He is a farmer, so by my home a lot. I feel like I need his contact so the day will work. He doesn’t know what to do with me half the time and I reckon I must be a moody missus these days but I definitely wouldn’t be without him.

Coffee. Not just any coffee. It must be Azera. Lime (I live in a very limey area!) Has murdered two excellent  coffee machines in my home. Miss Marple  would have a field day. So I rely on nasty nasty instant. Until I discovered this brand. I think I might lie down and cry if I didn’t have it!





Books. I plan to write about those  a lot.

Music.The eldest Paper, Gigi  is nearly two. She sings all day, like  a Von Trapp on Lucazade. ( I don’t  give my child Lucazade, it’s  just a poor simile). Old McDonald, Ring a Roses and of course Hey Diddle Diddle. I have spent four months asking her ‘And the dish ran away with?…’.Whereby she shouts gloriously ‘the Boon!!’. How could that not make your day? Back to The Apology Loop now because  as sweet as that  is, I love my Bowie CD too. And others. The time to write about those  will come again. Just as the time to hear them will also return and I will cry for the days my baby said ‘ha ha ha!’when I talk about how the little dog laughed.


I love a clean home. Nappies, silage and dogs are battling me on this one. I mop as often as possible. I dust. First thing in the morning, I have no time. So I light a scented candle.



Pretty pictures

I live surrounded by framed postcards,  old gift  cards and any quirky cute item I see for sale. They gather dust and cramp my home. I love them. I wouldn’t be without them.


This is the big thing. My work involves an amount of writing and thinking about literature. I miss that sorely. Here I am writing. This is surely a good thing. It is nine twenty am. I feel pretty good about life already. I thank this writing!


I never have enough! When I am given the chance to ‘be’ I grab it with both hands. These days the bath is my alone time. Once again,  I feel guilty when I am immersed in bubbles  and I can hear Betsy give her Daddy Paper a hard time. The  Apology  Loop? Here we are again!


I am a follow through person. So plans to visit Kate on Monday,  go to the chemist on Thursday etc are all achieved here. I have promised to work on happiness in this blog. I plan to follow through!

Bear with me, if you do read my rambles,  as I am learning to work this world of the blog. I am using my mobile. Would you believe I have no Internet connection except this!  Broadband is still what I needed on my maternity pants and no more! I will write again  x

Crazy days

Motherhood has made me desperate! Desperately happy…and at times desperately in despair. There are days I can surely say feel like I am wrangling with a horned beast when only armed with a toothpick. I feel like I am wearing a uniform of sweats, hoodie and ugly footwear and any effort to dress up is flattened in a moment by a spit up or yoghurty fingers! I mentioned before that my poor abandoned  handbags lie sadly by the wayside and I can add my pretty shoes to the mix! I love these babies with all my heart. Yet I know I am not myself. I aim to document my progress to re-find myself…and share it with the world!