Happy Valentine’s Day

Today is the 14th (January).  I’ve been working on Valentines Day offers for my cake business.  So my mind is already in February.  In fact, as most business owners will know, I’m already at Easter and on the verge of summer really.

My husband went to the gym early this morning and I thought, oh no! I don’t have a card or anything so I thought it’d just get away with a loving kiss.  He came in just before the school run and I gave him a kiss and said Happy Valentines Day.  He looked puzzled and asked is it?  I said yah, it’s the 14th.  He starts to apologise for not getting me anything then gives me a sceptical look and calls me a ‘419-er’ – which means fraudster in Nigeria.  He thought I was setting him up.  ROTFL 🙂 I genuinely thought it was Valentines Day.  I explained that I was working on some offers and had got caught up in that but I don’t think he believed me.  Hahaha.  Hilarious start to my day.

Although I love that we are at that stage where a kiss is enough to celebrate Valentines Day.  I’ll see if that sentiment is still there in February. 😉

Happy Valentines Day everyone!

image

Thanksgiving

​I tried to capture the beauty of this tree but the sunlight was overpowering. Maybe I was standing in the wrong position. Perhaps I should have had the sun behind me. Dunno. I’m not a photographer, I’m a writer; but I love taking pictures.

Autumnal colours were in full bloom on it. Nature is truly an extraordinary artist. I simply bow as the beauty of creation.

Lately I’ve been taking a lot of pictures on my phone. I post them every morning on my instagram account.  

And I’ve been wondering lately why I’ve suddenly started taking pictures and more importantly, sharing them.

Well my first thought was my route to work is absolutely gorgeous. It makes the gloomiest days perfect. If you ever visit Cambridge, you must go to Jesus Green. I’m sure I’ve said this before. Well it’s stunning.

I digress. As I continued taking shot after shot, day after day, I realised that they are my expression of gratitude.

All my ducks may not be in a row, they certainly aren’t, but as I look around me each day, there is something worthy of my undivided attention. I sometimes stop for a few minutes to take in the view and some days I don’t see it immediately but others, like today, it’s on full display. Not to be ignored or overlooked.

If you look around you I can guarantee you there is something to be grateful for, even on the darkest moments.

We as humans are really doing a great job of messing up this world but we as humans also have a great capacity to make it beautiful every day.

Today I am eternally grateful for life. To be able to wake up each day, get out of bed myself, walk, hug my children, yell at my children 😃😃, and just breathe and look up to the sky. I am simply grateful.

It Was Love at First Sight 

I never believed in love at first sight until I met Peggy.

I walked through the school gate and there she was. Her golden mane blowing in the wind. She had me at woof! 

I’m not a pet person at all. The only animal I like are dogs but the licking puts me off. The day I met Peggy all that changed. As soon as I saw her, I just went all mushy and weak. I grabbed her from her owner and started nose nozzling, stroking and kissing her. All things that would have got me arrested has I accosted a human being for the first time this way.

So now I’m broody. I want my own Peggy 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭

And as I was cooing and ahhing someone said, they are cute until they pee on you. There is always one isn’t there?😐😐😐😐 

If Peggy ever goes missing, well …. That’s all I’m saying.

In Praise Of The Unromantic Husband

When I got married, I remember feeling intense pressure for my marriage to mirror that of others around me; particularly in the area of romance.

However as God would have it, my husband isn’t really romantic. He has his moments but I wouldn’t say it’s his natural habitat. There are many things that my husband doesn’t do that I wish he would do. He’s just not romantic and so he doesn’t say I love you every second of the day. He doesn’t plan weekends away. He doesn’t see the point of eating out in a fancy restaurant. There are many things I really really wish he would do. I kind of think, they would make my life richer.  Like diamonds and pearls……… but my life would be so so empty without him.

He doesn’t say I love you with his lips but he burns it into my soul with his eyes. And when he gives me that look, I feel like there is no one else on the face of the earth but us. I become a shy little teenager and can’t stop the smile that splays across my face. Under the gaze of that look, he speaks a million and one things that words could never express. And my heart is full.

So after ten years of marriage, I’ve learnt not to wish for so many things in a way that destroys the love we do have. I have learnt to appreciate what he does do. Like the fact that he wants the absolute best for me and is my greatest cheerleader. Like the fact that he doesn’t demand that I alter myself or my STRONG opinions. Like the fact that he wants me to be happy often at great expense to himself. The fact that he remembers what my favourite chocolate is and randomly surprises me with it. The fact that he is a content being, never dragging us from pillar to post in search of nirvana.

So yeah, I don’t get the romantic dinners and mushy words and the diamonds I constantly nag him about, but I’ve got a really great man too.

Happy 10th wedding anniversary darling. I love you more!

JA8O1751_color

A Room Full Of Love

I went to a friend’s wedding over the weekend and I was reminded of something that has been resonating in my heart this year. 

My friend was what you would term an ‘older’ bride. A day shy of forty, she was as true to herself as I know her to be.

Her makeup didn’t make her look like a stranger; her dress was elegant with no trace of flamboyance; her train was filled with her nieces and children of one of her closest friends; everyone who was special to her, had a significant part to play in the day; her joy was effervescent and infectious. She was herself, the best version of herself that the world doesn’t always get to see.

As we progressed from the church ceremony to taking photographs; to the reception and then the after party, I was struck by one thing that sums up the whole day for me. They got married in a room full of love. 

There were no strangers at the wedding. In fact it was so intimate that there was only room for family and close friends. You could tell that everyone in the room had a relationship with them and the presence of love in the room was breathtaking.

I looked round the room at different points during the day, most of us had spent the best of at least eight hours with them. It was a Friday, which meant for a huge chunk of us, we took time off work.  For me, the thought of not being there, was unimaginable. We’d shared so many moments together and I wasn’t going to miss this one. I suspect for the best part of the room, that was the case.

At forty seconds to midnight, everyone started a countdown to the bride’s fortieth birthday. Ushered in by a kiss from her husband and cheers from loved ones singing happy birthday; I couldn’t imagine a better way to celebrate life.

My thoughts along the year have been about true friendship. And I’ve concluded that it really is important to remember in whatever I celebrate in life to make sure I am surrounded by a room full of love. 

It’s the most important element; more than the venue, food, decor, ambience, etc. If there is no love in the room, it’s guaranteed to leave you empty.

I have no doubt that my friend’s heart was full to the brim. How could it not be? In a room full of love.

  

-RWW

You Are Doing a Great Job

I wanted you to know that despite your darkest moments and constant doubt, you are doing a great job.

Just by showing up every day and being there for your child, you are doing a great job.

Sure there are things you could do better but always remember that children only care that they are loved unconditionally.

So remember to laugh, remember to live in every precious moment and remember to love unconditionally.

Happy Mother’s Day
💋💋💋💋💋💋

Children Can’t Keep Secrets

Never trust children to keep a secret. It’s hopeless. Even if they don’t tell you, tell hint at it.
It’s obvious mine have been making cards or some gifts at school for Mother’s Day. I’ve actually been the one telling them not to tell me any more, particularly my daughter- she can’t help herself.

I guess it’s the excitement.

    “Mummy, you are NOT allowed to open my book bag this week”
    “Mummy, I’ve been writing a poem but I’m not going to tell you what it’s about.”
    “Mummy, there is a bag in the living room, and you are not allowed to look into it.”
    “Mummy, I’ve moved the stuff into the cabinet with the CDs so DON’T go there.”

All the while I can feel my husband on the verge of saying something before she spills the beans. Giving her the side eye.

20150314-115909.jpg

It’s hilarious because I’m the one having to preserve the secret otherwise she would have told me what they’ve done at school ages ago. Only one more sleep! Let’s hope she survives the wait.

Feeling Really Special

I woke up this morning with a glow after a really lovely and restful half term break which culminated with lunch with a lovely family.

This morning, I was stopped at the school gate by a friend who greeted me with a bright, “thank you for your blog”. She had spent a whole day reading it from start to present day and wanted to let me know she loved it. I was really surprised, encouraged and floaty on my way to work. I suddenly understood why I got a WordPress alert at the weekend telling me I was getting hourly views. 🙂

Then I got to work and found these sitting pretty on my desk.

20150223-101053-36653084.jpg
Now you can imagine that I’m levitating. I pray this is a sign that the week is going to be pleasantly sweet.

Wishing you all the same too. 🙂

Be Your Own Valentine, Every Day

My daughter walked into my bedroom on Valentine’s day and saw the card and gifts my husband gave me and cue dropped shoulders, sulk and a moan that sounded like awwwoooowwww- after which the shoulders sagged even lower.

I laughed and asked what was wrong. She promptly replied that it was not fair that I got a Valentine’s card and she didn’t get one. Before I could say anything, she said “I know what I’ll do, I’ll make one for myself”.

Of course you don’t need to guess how proud I was that one, she came up with a practical solution on her own to what she felt was a problem and two, she had stumbled onto one of life’s important lessons – loving yourself first.

There is no substitute for knowing you are loved and you are lovable before anyone says they love you. The second commandment that Christ gave was to love others as you love yourself. We are usually very good at pouring out love to others in need and loved ones but often very hard on ourselves.

Years, years, years ago I remember doing some sort of self awareness exercise. I can’t even remember where I was but I remember the result. The mission was to name ten things I loved about myself and then things I didn’t like. I filled up the ten things I didn’t like very quickly and could possibly have gone on to twenty but I got to number three on the love list and I couldn’t list things anything else that I loved about about myself. You should try that list to see what your love quotient on yourself is.

Maybe life has been very tough on you or people have told you that you are unlovable. Whatever the case is, you are only a shadow of who you really are if you can’t learn to love yourself – warts and all. You can search for it in the arms of another; try and find it in climbing your career ladder; hunt for it in the crowd of people you surround yourself with. You can try, try, try and try but until you can look in the mirror and say I like what I see – all of it the good, bad and ugly – then you haven’t lived. If you can’t do that, every achievement is hollow because you will be haunted by the quest to be good enough for x, y and z or to be like a, b and c. If you can’t love yourself, sadly no one else’s love will ever be good enough to fill that vacuum.

I learned that lesson at twenty-five which I think was very late but better late than never. If my daughter can learn this at the age of six, her life is going to be AMAZING!

    20150217-081214.jpg