Gosh, isn't this frosty photo just beautiful? My lovely husband took it. I think he's all kinds of talented.
It's kind of unrelated to this post, because I am going to have a grumble. Well, not a grumble per se, more a rambling, complaining bit of verbal vomit at the computer page, and then leave it there for all to read. Because sometimes it's better to spew it out and then just get on with things.
What I really love to do, wanted to do, revel in, is be a stay-at-home-mum. Oh I wish there was a better, grander name for it because however you word it, it always sounds a bit like that box you tick on a career list - at the end - that says 'none of the above'. But it's the biggest, greatest, most important job on the planet. Think how many grown-ups ruin their lives or other peoples' because of how their mind was messed with in childhood. Think of all your happiest, largest memories from childhood and how your parents helped make them.
Once upon a time I was a stay-at-home single mum to a lovely little boy. Then he went to nursery and I went to university, and fast-forward a few years and I was the full-time working single mum of said boy. He had a lot of family around and he didn't miss out too much but I dreamt and dreamt of being able to take and collect him from school every day. I dreamt of more children, happy families and a life spent immersed in the joy and wonder of their childhood. I knew there would be tough days, exasperated days, but I knew it would be the greatest pleasure of my life to be there with them as they grew, and one of the greatest pleasures of their little lives too.
Here I am living it. Husband, two little ones, and the big one too. We moved away from the big smoke in part so that we could live our dream of me bringing up our babies. I love it just as I thought I would. I am fulfilled by it just as I thought I would be.
There's a but. Oh, you just knew there would be a but, didn't you?!... In the time I had to stay at home with these little marvels, I knew I had to search for the vocation that would fulfil me once they head on to school and don't need me at home as much. I'm just not going to be one of those ladies who lunch while their primary children are being schooled elsewhere, even if it wasn't for the fact that I need to earn my keep.
I found it. It's sewing and writing. Ta-dah! But I found it too early, as I'm still three or so years away from my youngest going to school. And I still love the mothering just as much. I don't want to stop doing it in order to sew or write. I want to do it all! Oh, frustration!
I'm not sure how some of these other bloggers out there, mothering and crafting away, are doing it. I'm pretty sure a number of them have children who don't wake until at least 7am and they get up at 5 for a good bit of sewing first. Well, my boys wake around 6 and I need my sleep. I've tried the 5am thing. Within two days I'm running on empty. Some of them have children who are all tucked up in bed by 7pm and then spend their evenings stitching. Well, my boys are usually settled by 7.30 but then I'm really tired and my husband wants to actually see and interact with me, and I'm lucky if I have the time and motivation to spend more than two evenings a week sewing. I get some sewing done in the day most days, but I'm forever stopping to soothe arguments, put visors on toy firemen, remove toy horses from the sewing machine or, usually and eventually, resorting to sewing with a child on my lap who really likes the look of that sharp, sharp needle.
I've written about this before - I'm getting déjà vu - but with Christmas approaching and a mountain (I am not kidding you) of sewn gifts to complete by then, while the ironing pile becomes its own mountain and the children bounce off the walls... well, it's really coming back into focus.
This is all very ironic as I'm spending what could be a sewing evening writing on the computer, but sometimes you just have to spew it out before you can get on with things.
And look at lovely photos your husband shot in order to remind yourself of what really matters in life, of the simple beauty of it all, and of the outdoors you're missing while revelling in that sharp, sharp needle working its magic.
And hope that someone out there has some fabulous advice to impart that doesn't involve a lifetime of exhausting 5am starts or never seeing your husband. (Shameless plea for useful comments)