2020 · Home Schooling · May 2020

Six weeks – 05.05.2020

Sending love ❤️, compassion 🥰 and hugs 🤗 to everyone doing their best……

Not my words but wanted to share! 💖

Dear parents in the U.K.,

Today marks six full weeks since our country went into lockdown.

You have had your children home for the same time now that you would if they were on summer holidays. People will say ‘but they are your responsibility’ and whilst that is true, no-one could be expected to have imagined this period before they chose to conceive.

You have protected, nourished, educated, supported and entertained your children during a period of national and international uncertainty and fear. You have experienced emotions for yourself and your family that you never knew existed, never mind experienced before.

Six weeks is a long time.

Think about how you feel at the end of the summer holidays, how ready you are for routine, how badly your house needs cleaned from children home, how much work you are ready to catch up on. Remember that exhausting feeling of having so little sleep, much less money and hearing ‘mummy/daddy’ every time you happen to sit down.

And you wonder why you are exhausted after six weeks of lockdown?

You are amazing! You have achieved something no other parent ever has during our time. You have faced six weeks unable to take your child or children anywhere, six weeks of no parks, holidays to break up the boredom, no day trips, no family to help. On top of that you have juggled work demands, loneliness on a level never experienced before, information overload from the internet and emotional turmoil of not being able to see people you hold dear. Even getting food to eat has been a major drama!

So it’s ok to feel drained. It’s ok to feel like you would sell your soul right now for five minutes alone. It’s ok to feel uninspired about another day of homeschooling, another day of never ending laundry and cooking.

It’s ok to be so very tired.

Six weeks is a long time.

But you have made it.

Be proud of yourself. Stand tall.

History will show you for your courage, your children will remember this period as a time knowing they were safe and loved and teachers everywhere are deeply grateful that you are there for your children when they should be but can’t be.

In short: you are awesome!

And so are your children.

2020 · April 2020 · Home Schooling

Perspective – 27.04.2020

It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the negative view of quarantine. Home-schooling five daughters, spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with the same people and minimal contact with people outside our household. Listening to the bickering, the power struggles and witnessing the actions of frustration. Honestly, it would be so easy to just say “f**k it”.

But then I see moments like this…. and I am reminded of the absolute beauty of quarantine.

I am a full-time Mum to five individual, creative and challenging daughters. My husband holds the responsibility of providing financially for us all. And that is very often a heavy weight.

This lockdown has forced him to stop working; it wasn’t a choice. There will be a financial impact, of that I have no doubt, but the family impact…. well that could have never been measured. You see, we have never ever, had this amount of time together as a family. And the benefits that our time together is having on us as individuals and as a family, is incredible.

It is hard work, not a day goes by where a someone gets upset, an argument happens over who’s turn it is to use the tv remotes, or who last used a hairbrush or even about breathing in the same direction of another person (yes that really is a case for an argument in this house). But, every day, there is always that one moment (some days a treat of two), where they’ll surprise us with their love, kindness, intelligence and their inquisitiveness.

And if all else fails, at the end of the day, if I’ve not seen “that moment”, I remind myself….. We’re all still alive and most of us are still smiling ❤️

Stay safe & stay home.

Sending virtual hugs to family and friends ❤️

April 2020 · Home Schooling

They’re at it again – 21.04.2020

As part of our weekly home school session we have been implementing a music lesson for our 5 daughters. We have a variety of musical instruments to allow for plenty of music to be made. Add to that the amazing vocal abilities in our household, you can be sure of music all day long.

Here is today’s music session. It is Daddy and Daughters 3 (age 10) and 5 (age 8) singing Someone You Loved by Lewis Capaldi. Please note: We do not own the rights to the music used in this video.

April 2020

Stillness – 16.04.2020

We had such a calm and peaceful time at Sopers Bridge today.

Leaving the house, the big teen was still moody. She had decided to stay in bed all morning, refusing to join us for breakfast and not taking part in our normal activities.

It’s so hard to explain to our children that we can see their behaviour, we understand why they are behaving that way and actually the best thing to work through it is to talk, eat well, get some exercise, drink plenty of water and rest well.

When we got to Sopers Bridge, which is absolutely picturesque and so very calming, the big teen regretted her decision of not having any breakfast. She decided that her mood of not wanting to take part with her sister’s activities, was actually making her miss out on some fun. 5 minutes into our time there, she was running around, climbing trees and laughing with her sisters. It was lovely to see them all playing. They were absolutely filthy, they all had mud on their arms, hands, legs and bums; they loved rinsing their hands in the stream.

Four of the girls had took camera’s with them, I hope to show them tomorrow.

Even with all the laughing, it was still peaceful. I was able to hear the stream running over the stones and a woodpecker in the trees; it really was beautiful. We are so very fortunate to have this on our doorstep.

2020 · Days Out · March 2020

Light up Leicester – 07.03.2020

Tonight we took the girls into Leicester to attend the Light Up Leicester Festival.

DM, Carla and I saw one of the displays on Thursday night but hadn’t realised just how much there was to see or how much fun was to be had!

There are seven displays located at various points around the city centre, all no more than 5 minutes walk between each one.

It’s a completely free event running from the 5th – 8th March.

Our first experience tonight was The Wave at St Peters Square. This was a beautiful experience of hanging lights playing music; it was so romantic and colourful. Following on from this we went to Jubilee Square to see Unexpected Connection.

The photo’s of this does not do it justice. The colours are so vibrant. I had a bit of a play with my camera at this one on Thursday…..

We then went on to Humberstone Gate to the display that gave us the most giggles, Wave Field.

The girls took it in turns to have a go on the light up seesaws 😍

Our next venture was over towards the Curve Theatre to see the screen display aptly titled Youth Culture…

We then walked over to the Market Square to see Traces (no photo). This was a net of lights suspended from the ceiling of the market that once you had scanned the QR code, you can change the colours and patterns of the lights. Just behind the Market was my favourite, Shadowdance…

The girls had so much fun playing with their colourful shadows.

We left this and then moved to the final display of Shoefiti.

This city was buzzing with lots of families, couples and friendship groups taking part in all of the displays.

A huge well done to all involved in organising such a fun and creative display around the city centre!

There is one more day left of the festival. It’s on from 5pm to 10pm. If you have the chance, I really would recommend that you give it a visit.

2020 · February 2020

Baking rota – 29.02.2020

We’ve been planning to make some Crunchie cupcakes for quite a while.

Our girls love to bake with me and when we do we make quite a lot of cupcakes.

I ended up making the cupcakes with Minion today. With the five girls it’s always a battle as to who licks the whisks, who cleans (licks) the bowl and who gets to eat the leftovers 😂

We made chocolate sponge cupcakes, with honey buttercream topping and then placed chopped bits of Crunchie on the top.

After making 34 cupcakes, DM wanted to do some baking too! DM is not a big cake fan, so it was a surprise to me that she asked to make a Victoria Sandwich cake.

She made two vanilla sponge cakes, with a chocolate spread filling, and then topped and coated the sides with a vanilla buttercream and chocolate shavings.

Anyone for some cake??……

2020 · February 2020

The difference a day makes – 22.02.2020

That’s it, I quit! Oh my word, last night was my limit. I have spent this past week trying to entertain the girls, give them time on their electronics and time to entertain themselves. But last night I lost my s**t.

Yesterday morning 2Tone and Minion clocked their tally on the contributions and noticed that they still had over half of their contributions to do. They did a fantastic job of working through as many they could (only so they didn’t have to pay for their own breakfast 😒) And yet, the every day tasks around the house – loading the dishwasher, unloading the dishwasher, making lunch, cooking dinner etc, those jobs have still needed to be done with the extra task of entertaining the girls. Peach and I have had the girls at home, we’ve had our own responsibilities to carry out, pick up the slack of the girls contributions and then on top of that, I have the mountain of washing to do, ready for the return to school on Monday.

So today, I got the little three off to their Celebration Day at the NEC with Brownies and Guides and told the big girls to entertain themselves for a day. After a week of over 2 hours a day on their screens, they have also been told that there is no electronics for the weekend too! (Mean Mum 😈)

Me, what did I do with my first day ‘off’? Well I sorted the 11 piles of washing, and washed, dried and folded 6 loads of them. Then I completed over 4 baskets of ironing. 😫

Whilst doing this 2Tone did a fabulous task of clearing Kylo’s den and get really stuck in to tidying up and looked to be enjoying herself too. It was so lovely to see her taking pride in the space, learning where things belong, making her own mark on the space and then proudly showing everyone what she had achieved 😍.

DM made herself scarce for most of the day and all being told, got stuck in to helping Auntie CarCar at the stables with Harvey Horse.

Tonight, when the little three got home, we all had dinner and then settled down for a family movie. We watched The Proposal (much to Peach’s disgust). It’s always a battle as to who gets to sit on the two seater settee, it’s usually one adult with one or two children. However, tonight, Peach and I wanted to sit together, so we had the girls tucked around our legs with Kylo in-between them too! 😂😂