Hindsight on what matters – a note to my eldest child

When you were born, I didn't know why you cried. I carried you night and day, thinking I was doing something wrong, but now I understand, you just wanted to be near me, as newborn babies do. It's so very obvious in hindsight. And 20 months later when your sister was born, I thought you were ...

An open letter to the person in the place

I've read many "an open letter to" posts in the last few years. Sometimes they're angry, sometimes conciliatory, and  sometimes empathetic. In particular, I've read posts about supermarket confrontations - women who have been judged for their parenting, or had some kind of less than pleasant encounter. I wondered when my day would come - ...

Breathing In All The Spaces

I promised myself (not just an in-the-air promise – an actual written down promise) that the next time I had a lull, I’d take a morning for myself. And here I am – almost all current deadlines met, book edits on the way but not here yet – doing just that. I’m getting my hair ...

11 essential tools that help me to be a moderately mediocre parent

tea - office mum

These are just my own personal essential parenting tools - they're not by any means universal - but without them, I suspect I'd be in some kind of institution at this stage. In no particular order: 1. Kids' TV TV saves my life every evening. Take yesterday for example. There were fourteen children running around my kitchen ...

Anatomy of an Afternoon

lunch boxes - office mum

I made three new year's resolutions this year; one for work, one for running, and one for home -  this is the home one: "fix afternoons with the kids so they're less chaotic." But unlike my work and running goals, the home goal isn't specific, nor is it measurable, and it didn't come with any kind of ...