The destination

I have previously found the phrase ‘enjoy the journey, not just the destination’ a good rule of thumb in achieving most things. However today, as we drove south, it was rather tricky to believe. 
Leaving our new home reluctantly and being bone tired, slightly hungover didn’t set us off in good stead. The Big Man slapping his face to stay awake did also not bode well after 60 miles. Multiple long sections of 50mph on the M1 and loose horses also added to a prolonged delay and intensified time on the iPads whipped up a frenzied, intense atmosphere so much so that we had to stop and line up in a lay-by and have words.
The destination was an oasis, a haven. Fresh air, cousins, sisters and friends… food, wine, laughter and excited preparation for the Mortimer sibling cycle… 
Today, the journey is best forgotten! 


Today – there were moments I felt like a good mum, a great mum and even an awesome mum. When Tom and Willy presented themselves covered in mud from rolling in the fields… and I laughed and told them to run a bath, and they came running back up soaked and drenched me in a ‘mummy sandwich’ and I embraced it and laughed… When Tom flung his arms around me and told me how much he loved me…. when willy snuggled up close in bed for cuddles… when I see their happy frolicking play across the lawn and running towards the coach house Den we have been sweeping and tidying together… they have freedom, they are safe, they know they are loved and they are happy. All the signs of good parenting in my book.
 But there were moments, when I felt like a terrible mother, and out of control screaming fish wife. When I find dirty socks hidden under dressers, pepperami wrappers tucked between cushions and lecture them on respect … for the house and my time! And even more angrily, repeating the same again when I find their basement bathroom flooded, the bath overflowing and being used as a jumping pool, sodden clothes littered in corridors and on sofas …. earlier, my panic and silent questioning of myself and motherhood when the cries I thought were happy ones for 20 minutes suddenly turn to ones that make me run on my bad ankle regardless down the lawns to the derelict barns, worrying they had fallen through an old trap door…. 
But there they were… one crying, one laughing… blond heads peaking through an open sash window. They had closed the hatch and it had stuck and they couldn’t get down…. not even one dangling the other down to the old horse trough…. my heart stops at the thought.  
But in those moments, because they are safe, I have to laugh. And my voice of compassion in the form of Hagrid returns. And in his gruff voice he tells me to relax, give myself a break. I am still emotional, still stressed and suppressing enormous anger….
And what is that anger I am ignoring, I ask myself? That is perhaps making me over react to small issues … like the sky man, water on the floor and muddy shorts?  
I go back into my heart and ask. Trust is still the one thing that makes me feel out of sorts. And I do not like that feeling. It does not sit well in my stomach… we may have moved on, started anew…. but it’s still there and my IBS, tension and self doubt flares. 
Motherhood. A constant battle of self doubt, self gratificAtion or admiration and selflessness. 
And as I search for a quote – the first one is a kingfisher. I take that as a sign as I am doing ok. Given the circumstances.

How do you eat an elephant?

And so it begins.


How do you eat an elephant?


Not that I would refer to either our dream house or myself as an ‘elephant’… but the first bites of many have been taken.


After 4 months of being ‘off games’ due to injury and the advice of physio and doctors, I have gained a stone of pure lard and lost muscle.  Probably no bad thing given the dramatic weight loss of the end of last year.  But I am now mentally and physically, emotionally ready to get back and enjoy leading a more healthy, active lifestyle.  I have enjoyed the first 3 bites of this ‘elephant’ this week, even though not my beloved running (my ankle unable to flex or point)… I loved the feel of my heart rate soaring at spin, the ache of my muscles, the inability to walk downstairs without groaning, the result of my first weights in nearly 5 months and the tightening and locking of my core after pilates.


I am going to love eating the elephant!  The journey and the results.


I have a feeling the other elephant, however, will be rather a different story.  The first bite took the longest, was the most drawn out chew, tough and hard work.  We took the brave next step and took a second bite today.  This will be where our rollercoaster will continue as we face the red tape and politics of planning with a listed building.  But I will remind myself to see it as a fun challenge!  Especially when we find the right team; and that starts with a good architect, one we trust and who can see and share our excitement and vision.   As we wandered around and discussed the various projects with our first architect, beers in hand, the sheer size of this elephant felt more than slightly overwhelming.


But “how do you eat an elephant?”


One bite at a time.



waiting for a miracle..

Journalling is time for reflection.  To play back the day and have gratitude for the moments that went well, brought you a lighter step, a smile to your lips and also to review those that didn’t sit so well, and to give yourself the time to replay the show reel in your mind in a more positive way.  I have also found it a way to empty my mind of the negative thoughts, pen to paper, letter taps to image on a page, to see them and release them.


I read beautiful words today, written by a friend followed by the words of Marla Gibbs.  And today I reflect on those.


Life:  you can’t open up to a new chapter until you fully close the one behind you.  It takes time, one step at a time.” Kelly B.


“I truly believe that everything that we do and everyone that we meet is put in our path for a purpose.  There are no accidents; we’re all teachers – if we’re willing to pay attention to the lessons we learn, trust our positive instincts and not be afraid to take risks or wait for some miracle to come knocking on our door.”  Marla Gibbs.


You can’t open up to a new chapter until you fully close the one behind you.  There are moments I feel like I am well in to the second page of my new chapter:  as the boys and I embrace our new surroundings, our summer gardens, our local amenities, have fun sweeping out the old coach house to make a summer holiday den for the boys and laugh on the grass under the blazing July sun or simply eating cherries from a pretty bowl on the sunny terrace.


These are all the little steps, one moment at a time.  Inching my way, further from the old chapters of ignorance, the previous days of disbelief lying lacking in energy, floored by life .. and in to the future ones, making my decisions, choosing happiness and to be me.


If we are willing to pay attention to the lessons we learn.  I have learnt many lessons.  Some I didn’t want to learn or didn’t know I needed to learn.  The hardest one to learn right now, as I sip on my rose alone watching the Wimbledon highlights, is to trust my positive instincts, when my negative ones are sounding like sirens, for probably no reason at all.  In the last chapter, I learnt the lesson to not trust.  I also learnt vulnerability and to share my feelings.  And I have learnt to forgive myself for the negative instincts and thoughts.


It may be a small risk, but I am willing to believe the innocent phone call.  And I will wait for the miracle to come knocking on my door, as no doubt he has forgotten the keys to our home, in this new chapter.

Boringly normal

I am loving today for the fact that there has been zero drama in my life recently.  Nothing.  No life issues, no moving house issues, no children or parent problems… no cars driving in to a house, no stress, no worries and I didn’t even care that the Sky man used ‘health and safety’ issues to not fit the new Sky dish, even though there are 2 already there!


As the adrenalin that has been keeping me energised for the past few months, seeps out of my body from between my toes, my headaches stop and I relax from the head and shoulders down so much that I found myself asleep on my bed as I waited for the shower to heat up (even though it didn’t) and again in the movies.


As I sit in my pink and green stripey chair, I hear the boys watching ‘hop’ for the g-zillionth time and eating their post supper cereal and fruit bowls and the Big Man is nearly home and about to pour long G&T’s before an early night.


All is good.  All is finally ‘boringly normal’.  All that left is a peace, happiness and blue haired joy.


The last time I thought that, the sh*t hit the fan.  Come on Universe – I dare you!


happiness by buddha

The lost keys

It was a day of the lost keys!


You can search for hours, looking in all the obvious places, retracing all your steps, emptying all your pockets, bags and drawers, turning everything inside out and upside down but find nothing.


And then you relax, make a plan B, get on with your life.


And then they turn up, in an unexpected moment, in the most obvious place.


It’s all rather metaphorical really, especially when we realise that the keys must have fallen out of a pocket as we had a pile-on, family sandwich huggle on the sofa last night.


I love the windows in this house.    Floor to ceiling old Georgian style sash windows or curving bays.


I love the views from this house.  Freshly mown summer green lawns and fields or flower beds bursting with lilies, roses and lots of other flowers of which I don’t the name.


I love each and every room of this house.  From each box, I unravel carefully packed and stored treasures and relish each moment of putting them in their new place in their new home.


I love our old friends as new neighbours to this house.  Fun times over tea and banana cake, rugby in the paddock and crazy golf on the lawns.


I found all my hearts today and spreading them around the house, hanging them on door knobs to share the love and let this house know how grateful I am to be here in a happy place, physically, mentally and spiritually.