BIRTHDAYS, MEMORIES, MILESTONES, Stay Present

A BIRTHDAY YOU’LL NEVER FORGET

Happy 14th Birthday Son, we’re sure this will be one you won’t forget (lock down 2020!)

We are so proud of the young man that you’ve become I don’t think any parent could wish for a better Son than you, your love and respect shines through in all that you do and your polite and caring personality makes us so proud to be your parents.

We have to thank you Dylan. You were easy from the start.  

Easy conception, easy pregnancy, easy birth and easy to love.

I also want to thank you for making me a more ‘Present Parent’. 

First time around as a new mum everything’s new and frightening. You just don’t really know what to expect or know what you are doing? 

It’s a learning process full of doubts, tears and fears! 

So caught up in dirty nappies, sleepless nights and parenting anxiety, it’s hard to enjoy those first few years as a new mum. 

But by the second child most of us are feeling a bit more confident, but alas, sadly for some, complacent. 

You taught me how to enjoy being a mum. And how to appreciate every minute as special.  And you always make us smile!

Can see you as the next Simon Cowell!

Your love made ordinary moments most would take for granted as precious and unique.  

You made me notice them.

You made me present to the joy of being a parent and of being your Mum. A privilege I’ll always hold dear.  Such as the time when you were just three years young. I was taking you to the Dentist, when as we were holding hands and crossing the road out of the blue you said; 

 ‘I love you Mum.’  

I can still remember to this day thinking that this was such a good moment in my life.  I wanted my mind to photograph it forever, so that when we were both older, we could look back upon that ordinary moment, with fondness of a great time. A time when we were both truly present together, enjoying one another’s company. 

We were just going about our daily business. Yet, it was such an extraordinary, emotional moment for me. So much so that, I can still feel those positive, loving, warm, fuzzy feelings deep inside me, whenever I recall that moment now. 

As normal and mundane as a trip to the dentist with your child may sound, I can guarantee that in years to come, you too will realise how special those everyday moments in time really are. Even if those moments do not feel like it today.  Even the loss of their 1st tooth!

1st baby tooth to go!

One day, those simple everyday memories, will be where you will linger longingly, wishing you could go back to.  

Making Memories.

Noticing, appreciating and being fully present in those moments we are spending with our children today, is what Present Parenting is all about.

Because one day those moments, will be some of the best moments in our lives.  

They truly are priceless, irreplaceable nuggets of time, that we all too often take for granted because, we are disillusioned by the concept that, the work and worries that occupy our minds, are the things that need our attention the most.

Yet, neither now nor in the future, will anyone or anything, ever bring us the joy, fulfilment or happiness that our children do. 

Always smiling.

It’s who we are with, and the love and time we give that counts!   

If today was the only time we had left on Planet Earth, chances are we would not want to clean our house or work overtime, schmoozing our boss for a pay rise. Chances are, we would want to spend our time with our loved ones, having fun and letting them know how much we love them, while appreciating, how much we too, are loved by them.

We don’t always remember the dates or details in life, but we always remember how we felt, this is what our children will always remember too. It doesn’t matter what we have or achieve in life, it’s all a waste of time, it’s who we are with, and the love and time we give that counts!  

Childhood doesn’t last forever. When our children reach their teens, it’s going to be too late to regret, not having had the time to, paint, play, cook, read, sing, dance and enjoy our time with them, while young.

Make the most of now, and start to live in and enjoy each and every moment with your child, from now on.  Tomorrow is promised to no one, stay present and be generous with that time. If you knew this was your last day ever with your child, you would hang on to their every word and not waste a single second of that time, and bear in mind, one day will be the last day you spend together. 

There’s no time like the present, and no present like time! 

Happy Birth- days! 

Stay Present Em x

MEMORIES, MILESTONES, PARENTING

SWEET 16

Well it’s happened the first coming of age milestone, our first-born turns 16!

It’s an emotional day.

We couldn’t have imagined the beautiful person you would become then!

Like all loving parents, our children are our life. Everything we do, we do it for you. But soon you’ll be doing stuff for yourself, now you’ll have your national insurance number you’ll be able to work and legally able to do other things we’d rather you didn’t. But so far parenthood has been a very rewarding journey, full of love and laughter, and we just want you to know Holly how very proud your Dad and I are of you.

Since the day you were born you just love to literally laugh out loud and to make others laugh too!

You had a tough entry into the world, giving me a tough time in the process, but since your initial birthday you have been an easy child ever since, and we want to thank you for giving us the best 16 years of our lives so far.

You’re funny, confident, caring, and full of that zest for life. You are always up to trying new things and giving anything a go, always facing your fears with determination, whilst always being thoughtful and empathetic towards others.

We’re so eternally grateful for everything you have taught us, especially all that’s good about this world.

We can all remember that moment we brought our first-born home from hospital. 

On tonight’s Snow Moon I will reflect on the day you were born. I remember that snowy February day like it was yesterday, my husband Paul putting the car seat down in the middle of the living room and us both staring at our new arrival Holly, for what felt like hours. 

We were just in awe of her. Scared and anxious at the same time. 

All those fears surfaced. 

How would we cope? 

What do we do if she cries? 

How will we know what she needs?  

When?  

And why? 

What if we don’t know how to be good parents? 

Now on her sixteenth birthday, as a Mum, I feel so proud, privileged and happy to have come this far, to have learnt so much but more importantly, to love and feel loved by such a smart, wonderful, funny, kind and crazy daughter. 

The pride and love I feel for her every day are overwhelming. Making that difficult birth and all those doubts and fears pale into insignificance. 

Yes, even the toddler tantrums and teenage angst has been worth every minute.  

So much so, I feel saddened that she is growing up way to fast, and I long for those baby days back. 

Yes, children change your life in many ways, but always for the better.  

It may be hard to imagine now when you’re in the thick of dirty nappies and sleepless nights, but it’s in those ordinary moments together, that one day, you’ll linger with your memories longing to go back.  

Parenting is a very rewarding time and can be lots of fun if we let it. Enjoy and treat every day as a special one, because while your child is young, every day really is special and full of firsts. First words, first steps, first pee on the potty, first day at school, first boyfriend, all of which are magical moments for you and your child to cherish.

Believe me, the time really does go so quickly, one day you are crying into your pillow, begging for some sleep while they are teething, the next you are crying into a tissue as you are waving them off to university!

When your baby becomes one of your best friends!
DAD AND DAUGHTERLY LOVE

One day in the not so distant future, those dreaded night feeds, school runs, class assembly’s, duvet days and trips to the dentist, will become the best moments in our lives.  

Today they are ordinary every day events, although tomorrow they’ll become the most extraordinary, priceless, irreplaceable nuggets of time in our lives. Time that all too often we take for granted because we are disillusioned that the work and worries that occupy our mind, are the things that need our attention the most.  

Yet, neither now nor in the future will anyone or anything, ever bring us the joy, fulfilment or happiness that our children do. 

I wish they were both still this age!

Happy Birthday Holly Love Mum & Dad xxx 

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TICK TOCK GOES THE CLOCK


A clock tick’s for all of us, silently somewhere. And one is ticking now for you.

Christmas 2013, my Brother Ken was diagnosed with terminal stage 4 Cancer.

Given only months to live, we were lucky to celebrate his birthday together in June 2015.

He died two months later.

Left my Brother Mark, middle my Brother Ken and myself on the right, enjoying our last meal together.

When someone you love dies, it puts everything into perspective. You realise, nothing else matters in life really, other than who you are with, and the love you give.

As the sand in the hour glass falls, and the days on the calendar move forward another year to 2019, what is it you still haven’t done yet?

What do you need more time to do, be or have?

One day it will be too late to; travel the world, spend more time playing with the kids, to write that book, take that study course or do that job.

Too late to find that relationship that you’ve always dreamed of.

And too late to tell someone you are sorry or that you love them.

Too late to be the real you, the person deep inside that you know you can and want to be.

And too late to live the life you deserve to live.


Now is the time to act. Today, this minute, is the only time you are promised.

Joan Rivers while she was alive, was once quoted as saying

‘Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the present!’

The past is gone; the future is not guaranteed, but today, everything is possible.

‘No time’ – is an excuse.

‘Later when the time is right’ – Is procrastination.

Now is the time to act, before our fears of time running out become a reality.

Time Stands Still for No Man or Woman

It’s ironic how time only stands still, when something catastrophic happens in our lives.

Someone we love dies.

We receive a diagnosis from the doctor.

Our partner leaves us for someone else.

We lose our job or home.

Suddenly, it’s like we are frozen still in time.

For once, we stop being busy doing nothing, and become still.

Bewildered by how everyone else is still busy around us, getting on with their lives, oblivious to what is happening in our world.

Abruptly we wake from our dream or nightmare, crashing back to reality with an urgency, to do those things we always wanted to do, but just never had enough time.

We are all just waiting our whole lives for;

The time to be right.

To be ready.

To be old enough.

To have enough experience, knowledge, support, money or time!

But when is the time ever right?

When will it be the right time for you to follow your dreams, and live your life the way you want to?

What are you waiting for?

I welcome your comments on this topic. Let me know what you want to be, do or have, and when you think the time will be right or not for you, and why?

If you can hear that tick tock of the clock then, don’t let time take your dreams.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Best wishes Emma

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TO DO OR NOT TO DO?

Surely, none of us would have chosen to become parents in the first place, had we thought we would end up angry, frustrated, nagging, stressed out, sleep deprived, nervous wrecks?

WHAT HAPPENED?

We become parents with the sole intention of enjoying every moment with our children, and to love, cherish and appreciate the joy they bring.

Ok, admittedly before our bundles of joy arrived, we envisioned a beautifully decorated nursery, where our new arrival would sleep like a baby, peacefully through the night.

We never thought as far as the colic, teething, bedwetting, sleepless nights, and the crayon all over the walls, or the bombsite a toddler would create, in their once beautiful bedroom.

And it’s doubtful any of us could have imagined tantrums in the supermarket and brawls on the playground, as we daydreamed of building sand castles at the beach and sunny days playing in the park?

But have our children let us down, or have we all just been naively seduced by the notion of what parenting should be like?

The truth is parenting can be a joyous experience full of fun times together, but like any other relationship, it does take a lot of time and patience to build rewarding, loving relationships with our children.

It doesn’t matter what parenting tools or techniques we use, or how much advice we receive from others, without enough time to devote to our children, it’s all worthless and ineffective.

The good news, however, is that it only takes time to build those happy, healthy, and successful relationships with our children.

But we have to make the time for it.


STREAMLINING

Having too many things on our ‘to do list’ takes our time and attention away from our children.

We would certainly all be more effective and more relaxed parents, if we did not have so many plates spinning in the air. The frustration arises, when we try to keep all those plates in the air and the inevitable happens, we drop a few.

As our children are those closest to us, they’re naturally more loving and forgiving than anyone or anything else in our life.

We certainly can put them off a lot easier than we can our Boss or our Tax Return. Sadly, for those reasons they are the ones who suffer the most when we are busy doing too many other things.

Even when we are spending time with our children, all too often we tend to still be thinking of past work or relationship issues, or fretting about the future, instead of concentrating on them.

Understandably with our busy schedules and hectic lifestyles, our minds can and do easily wander from the trivia of our children’s conversations or complaints, to our more pressing grown up issues.

We will all be more efficient and effective parents though if, we learn how to streamline our commitments. For parenting to run smoothly, we have to be organised, but too many diaries, schedules, plans and to do lists, just keeps us constantly busy.

Seeing in black and white everything everyone else wants us to do, and how much has to be done, can feel daunting. And putting a slot in our diaries for our children’s ‘Us Time’ can easily get lost.

The less plates we have spinning, the less breakages we are responsible for, so it’s time to drop those ‘Time Takers’ once and for all.

Keeping one diary and one intention for the day; to be happy spending time doing what we love, with those we love most, is all we really need.