Life with Littles
- August 18, 2020
My last baby is starting school next week, and as we dive into this latest round of “the last of the firsts”, my emotions are bubbling up and spilling out of my fingertips. I feel the weight of the importance of this moment, the bitter-sweetness of something that will never come again. I feel her excitement and her pride, almost as intense as my own, and I feel the space widening painfully between us as I pull back one more step to make room for her ever-spreading wings.
And then, for me, there’s the other feeling. The one that lies dormant...
- July 11, 2020
I turned 40 a few weeks ago, right at the end of week seven of quarantine… and it wasn’t the 40th birthday I had imagined. 40 is a milestone I’ve felt good about meeting for a while, and I’d planned to celebrate it shopping and sipping champagne in my favourite city with my favourite women.
Instead I spent it – as we’ve spent most days in 2020 – at home. And although it seems frivolous to grieve a birthday party when so many have so much more to grieve, it occurs to me that many of my friends will reach this...
- January 27, 2019
It’s such a little word. My first baby turned six.
On her fifth birthday I remember looking at my hand, five fingers spread out in front of my eyes, and thinking, “A whole handful of years have gone by since she got here. I only have one more hand before her childhood is almost over.” I had a helpless feeling of time slipping through those five fingers, my powerlessness to stop it almost overwhelming.
A year later, I know something I didn’t know then.
I see mums on social media posting pictures of their sleeping babies with captions like “Please don’t ever grow...
- July 19, 2018
Not too long ago I had an epiphany – and it has changed the way I do motherhood.
This is no exaggeration. It has changed the way I spend time with my children, it has changed the dynamic in our household, it has changed the way I react in difficult situations, and it has given me more confidence to turn things around when they’re not going my way – which as a stay-at-home-mum, let’s be honest, is several times a day.
Like when the witching hour rolls around and the girls won’t eat their dinner and they’re fighting and one is...
- April 23, 2018
Clever old Kate has given birth to her littlest prince this morning, on St George’s Day. And for me (as I suspect for many), all hope of productivity for the day went out of the window the moment I saw the news alert pop up on my phone. All day I’ve had Sky News Live on in the background as the world held its collective breath, waiting for the royal couple to emerge from the Lindo Wing to introduce their tiny bundle to the bank of cameras and news reporters waiting outside those famous doors.
Why is it that these moments...
- March 16, 2018
My five-year-old has recently started coming home from Pre-K with homework. I know parents hold different opinions about the topic of young children being given homework from school – it’s so important that they have time to play, after all. But I, for one, absolutely love the concept of homework.
I love that it allows me to closely follow what she’s learning at school and that it gives me a chance to reinforce it. But more importantly, I love that it forces me to make sure the two of us find time to sit down together to focus on it.
- February 11, 2018
I had forgotten what two was like.
I had forgotten what it was like to hover on the ground below, my heart in my boots, as she climbs higher and higher. “To TOP Mummy!” I had forgotten the fear, the tingling in my fingertips and the sweat on my palms.
I hover, my hands just an inch from the backs of her legs, poised to catch the inevitable fall. She turns. “NO Mummy – I do it! BACK MUMMY!”
I had forgotten the defiance. The stamping of feet and the crossing of arms and the way the word “NO” sounds when it is...
- January 31, 2018
Dear fellow under-achieving mama,
Did you accomplish as little as I did today? Did you underachieve as hard? Not that it’s a competition or anything… I’m just scrounging around for some solidarity.
Did you forget it was library day, or show and tell, or that you were supposed to send money for the bake sale? Did you serve Fruit Loops for breakfast and start counting to three when she refused to put her shoes on – even though you weren’t really sure what threat you were going to carry out if she didn’t comply before you got there? Did you drive her...
- January 08, 2018
Yesterday you turned 5, and just like that, a whole handful of years have gone by.
A whole handful of years since your tiny head fit just here in the palm of my hand. A whole handful of years since these hands held you for the first time and knew what it was to hold the whole world.
Yesterday on your birthday I hugged you tighter than usual and whispered in your ear, “Oh no, please don’t be 5 – please stay 4 just a little bit longer.” And you pulled back, looked at me funny and said, “Mummy, I’m already 5....
- November 27, 2017
We love to read in our house and since long before my kids were old enough to understand what I was reading them, books were a big part of their lives. Now my nearly-five-year-old has started showing an interest in reading for herself and loves letters, the challenge of letter formation and the sounds of words. As a first-time school mum – and self-confessed book nerd – it has been a total thrill to get her little workbooks home from school this term, and to sit down with her and go through what she’s been learning in the day.