Censoring kids’ reading (or not) and running a book clinic

Reading - Office Mum

"And then the sixteen-year-old found out she was pregnant too, and she wanted to run away with her boyfriend!" This was the sentence that left me speechless last year, when my then seven-year-old was recounting the plot of the book she was reading. It was a Jacqueline Wilson book that we'd picked up second-hand at the ...

Dear Universe, I’d like a little word

on the way to Sandycove - Office Mum

Dublin, August 2016 Dear Universe, I'd like a little word about something. You see, we had this deal - I do the right thing, and you don't punish me. A very straight-forward agreement. But you don't seem to be holding up your side of the bargain these days, and I think we need to thrash it out. Take ...

Overthinking it at the Sandpit

rope bridge Clara Lara - Office Mum

"Mum, can I go into the sandpit?" Hurrah! Music to my tired ears, after an hour following him around slides and swings and zip-lines and rope bridges. I'll just sit on the side here and keep an eye on him in case he throws sand or walks off to try something else. I might just check my phone in ...

How I Stopped Shouting at my Kids

Elephant - Office Mum

My name is Andrea, I'm a yeller, and it's been 163 days since I last shouted at my kids. By no coincidence, it’s precisely 163 days since I had a blow-out shouting match with my six-year-old. She is a chilled out child – my easy one. But unlike her siblings, who are more used to getting in trouble ...

Removing Guilt and Adding Presence

Lemon and poppyseed cake - Office Mum

Once upon a time, when I worked a lot more hours than I do now, I felt like I never had quality time with my kids. Each night when they went to bed, I thought about how another day had slipped by without me noticing. I would try to think back to conversations and interactions ...