Do you ever look back on your life, and think ‘I wish I could go back to ‘x’ time, but know what I know now’? What do you wish you knew, or what advice would you give your younger self?
I would tell my younger self to go for what you want, and leave the opinions of others where they belong. I spent far too long restricting myself for fear of upsetting certain people, or groups of people. I had a fantastic manager who once said to me ‘we only get one go at this life’. She was right. It took me some time to fully appreciate her words, however I realised that they applied to me, in that I needed to live my life for me, not to fulfill roles others wanted me to.
I went for a walk today…
I went for a walk with my 2 year old today. We took her ‘baby crocodile’ with us.
Fortunately, it wasn’t the croc in the photo, but a pair of kitchen tongs. The crocodile enjoyed the walk very much, even managing to talk to a few dogs en route. I was given the honour of carrying the crocodile home. I’m sure none of the neighbours thought we were odd… I love my kids! 🙂
Christmas in July
We tend to have one large meal, with dessert, and snacks throughout the day. Gift wise, we do a ‘Secret Santa’, so that each person receives one gift. This is mainly for the kids, but fun for the adults also. We also have some Christmas-themed games, and a lot of laughter and free-flowing conversation. Naturally, we put the Christmas tree up, and the kids decorate it beautifully, and we play Christmas songs throughout our day.
We also do something a little extra each year. One year, we handmade Christmas crackers for each guest. Another year we made Christmas themed t-shirts. We have also made personalised Christmas placemats, and snow globes. It is always a nice, relaxing day, enveloped in love.
A Word About Advice
I think the best piece of advice I have ever heard is ‘don’t accept criticism from anyone who you wouldn’t go to for advice’. I love it, and remind myself of it often. Too many people have opinions on what you should or shouldn’t be doing without actually knowing anything.
The worst piece of advice I have heard would have been along the lines of ‘pretend you are less intelligent, so boys aren’t intimidated by you’. I’ll just leave that one there…
The baby of our family sat at the table for dinner, announced “I no like it!” regarding the untouched meal in front of her. She then swiped her plate off the table. She was reprimanded. The mess was cleared. She came to Mummy for hugs, and we all proceeded to talk about what we had each done for the day. Soon enough, she was climbing back up onto her chair. She tried her meal, and discovered she actually liked it, so continued eating.
We have a rule in our house that you must at least try your meal before you will be allowed anything else to eat.
As they are allowed to serve themselves, we often find that her older siblings may start off placing only a tiny amount in their bowl or plate, after protesting heavily that they will not like it. After tasting it, they then silently serve themselves more.
This rule works well for us.
It was a perfect day, weather wise. I watched my toddler run around, with her index finger out. She was trying to “catch” a butterfly on her finger. She found a few (white ones, but why disillusion her?), and had a lot of fun chasing after them. Unfortunately, none would land on her finger!
So we made daisy chains instead, while she asked me questions about the different parts of flowers, and about bees. She then became concerned that the bees wanted to take her flowers, clutching them to her chest, until I reexplained that bit to her.
I love all of the questions she thinks of, and her different, innocent perspective on the world and those in it.