Buddhism for Mothers by Sarah Naptoli

I started reading Buddhism for Mothers while on holiday. On holiday its really easy to take on board all the exercises outlined and even to try out some of the meditating exercise. Since coming back, even though I’ve tried being mindful but its not that easy. However, the best thing about Buddhism is not to berate yourself about it but peacefully move along and carry on when you can again. Continue reading “Buddhism for Mothers by Sarah Naptoli”

Midsummer Holiday Blues

 

Live your dream

I’m sitting in the car waiting for one daughter to finish her piano lesson while my other daughter is reading my tax adviser magazine and I’m sitting on my laptop blogging! Hmmm… I wonder which generation we should worry about!

Anyway, this isn’t why I started blogging. We are half way through the school summer holidays and this is the first summer holidays that I will be working in an office job while juggling childcare. So far, getting to the half way point has not been too bad. The first week and a half, we went abroad on holiday, the next week and a half, the girls stayed over at my mums which is an hour away in a different town. That was incredibly hard as I missed them so much, especially as I had just spent 10 amazing days just chilling with them all day long.

Fourth week

This fourth week of the holidays, however, is proving to be a bit more difficult. They want to stay with me all the time. They don’t want to go to their other grandparents’ house or the summer camp I booked them in for which are the only choices they have. I had no idea how everything would work out over the holidays so I had back up plans for every day just in case something happened and I got stuck. Apart from occasionally questioning my reasoning for starting an office job when I could have been working from home and chilling with them over the summer holidays especially while the weather has been so good, it’s been ok.

Anyway, I’m at home two days a week so that helps. However, working in an office-based job does tie me down to our city which is fine most of the time but I do miss just spending holidays at my mum’s chilling with her or with my friends from back home and working around my summer social life. Oh well. I guess I can’t have everything and the grass does always seem greener on the other side.

Boundaries

I don’t, however, miss the lack of boundaries where I constantly worry about finding time to work and then working til late at night. It is good to have fixed cut off times for work. Plus, my daily hours fit in perfectly with the school run so for half the year, life will be good, the rest of them time I will enjoy the chaos.

However, the tax returns are looking good. I have completed quite a few of them and only have two big ones left to do. I still have a few last minute simple tax returns to do which usually don’t come til the last minute, however, they are usually quite easy to do so I don’t normally worry about those. Apart from feeling like I should be doing something more, everything generally seems to feel good at the moment.

 

Homework help

Education quote

My daughters are 5 and 7 and are both in school bringing homework back on a regular basis. During this last school year, I feel like I haven’t spent that much time with them, helping them with their school work or even doing any extra work. I’ve heard of parents sending their children to private tutor lessons to help boost their learning. At the moment though, I want to hold this off for as long as possible mainly because I like all things educational. Continue reading “Homework help”

7 things I hate about going on holidays abroad

Don’t get me wrong, I love going on holidays abroad but there are a few things that I do hate.

1. Coffee

For some reason, wherever I go, even if its to Costa, I don’t generally like coffee. I prefer my own version of coffee using a kettle and coffee from a coffee jar. I’ve never been a big coffee drinker in that I need to drinks lots to get through the day and recently I’ve cut back on sugar, although after going on holiday it has gone up again. However, the first morning I got there, I was craving some coffee and nothing tasted good enough. Continue reading “7 things I hate about going on holidays abroad”

Bollywood Nights with Amazon Prime

Every Friday is Bollywood Night. My husband goes to play football and this is the one night of the week that I don’t have to rush around getting them to be on time. Friday’s we can all relax a little as there’s no school the next day. We also have pizza on Friday night and then I get to watch Indian films that I want to watch. The only reason I can get the girls to watch is because they can stay up later than usual.

Continue reading “Bollywood Nights with Amazon Prime”

Digital Retox Course

Digital Retox is a course delivered by Digital Mums, a social media training company that is specifically aimed at mums to make them work ready and still have the flexibility of working from home.

Every year when the social media manager course comes up on my emails asking if I want to do it, I contemplate, decide that I’m not really ready for this and then watch the price go up.  They created a new pilot course but I still didn’t do it, they created another pilot course and this time I jumped at the chance.  I’m so glad I did as it was a really interesting course and it was quite nice to talk to people on google hangouts and see them and realise that it is quite possible to work remotely and still be connected. Continue reading “Digital Retox Course”

First school holidays while working

Quote by Rachel Brathen

These are the first school holidays that I have had to deal with while working. I was so worried at the start but even though there is no real plan and I feel like I’m winging it, its not been so bad.

The one thing about them being older is that they are less clingy and letting them go to places is a little easier. Which is useful as this is the first time I’ve had to look into school holiday clubs. I did have their grandparents as back up before they fly off to India just in case either of them were ill or if anything happened that I couldn’t be there for them. Although this new place I work at do seem quite flexible and family friendly. They also allow working from home (which I will be doing soon!) so I don’t think it would be too much of a problem if for any reason I had to leave early as long as I attempt to make up the hours.

Holiday club

This week for 2 days the girls went to a football and fitness club. I was a little unsure about whether they would like football but the fitness part included lots of different activities like tennis, dancing and what seemed like rounders but they convinced me it wasn’t called that. Either way it sounded like fun, especially when my younger daughter came back proudly showing off her certificate for her effort in tennis.

It seems a bit pricey but at least I have something for the summer holiday if I need it or even if I don’t need it it might be something good for them to do once or twice a week in the holidays. I’m hoping, over the summer holidays that I might get some more flexibility with working from home because otherwise, I think I’m going to run out of holidays.

Being employed

Being employed is nice but it feels really strange working for someone at set hours with set amount of holidays rather than doing your hours as and when you feel like it. There are a few benefits though.  Rather than having to pay and do all my own CPD, I can now do it through work and possibly during work hours which feels like such a privilege and a relief. No more waking up at 4am and cramming in some online CPD.  I’ll need to find something else to do if I wake up so early!

Also, it’s nice to go into an office so close to home and talk and meet other people. Finally, once work is finished there is no (current) expectation to do more than your set hours which feels strange. Since I started working for myself, so that I could have the work/life balance I so crave for, I ended up working at any odd time. The boundaries of stopping work at a set time never really happened because I had the flexibility to do what I want when I want.

Once I’m in a routine and with working from home, I think it will get easier. The only thing I might miss is going to the girls shows and sports day and other stuff at school. I’m not too fussed about missing it to be honest but I think the girls might be disappointed. I’ll worry about that when it happens.

SATS

In other news, my daughter will be doing her SATs in May. Her reading and writing I’m not so worried about as long as she doesn’t rush. However, as a daughter of an accountant and an IT bod who both loved maths at school, we are a little disappointed that she doesn’t seem to have the maths gene and share the same enthusiasm for Maths. She is only 7 and so maybe we are expecting too much, too soon.

Homework

She says herself that she finds it a bit difficult and so this might be the one thing we will need to sit down and work with her. Although trying to get her to sit down and work is another thing entirely. Bribes with the iPad might come into play. I’ve only used it once so far but it worked out quite well and peacefully for a change! The alternative would be some sort of tutoring. Another perspective might help.

I don’t know how people do home tutoring.  It is something I randomly think about occasionally and I would love, in principle, to be able to do it but I don’t think I would have the patience to do so especially considering how hard it is to get them to do homework is. I’m so glad there are schools even though some days I feel like I spend more time in school events and meetings than I do anything else!