4 Aug 2015

Making This Summer Count


I recently read the very pertinent post "Summer, what summer?" by the lovely Kerri-Ann over at Life as Our Little Family, and it really touched me. In the post she describes the challenge of being a full time working mother and not being able to spend as much time with her little boy over the summer as she would like, and generally the struggles to combine motherhood with a professional career.

I completely agree with her, and it really resonated with me on many levels. I, too, work full time, which is both a choice and circumstance, and – as I have written on here before – I often struggle to combine the two and do both motherhood and my professional life justice. Or, to put it in a more glass half full perspective, I think I do manage, but not without much stress and effort. And this summer, I’m really feeling it more than ever.

It’s Becky’s last summer before she starts school, before our life will change significantly and our opportunities to get away or have quality family time will be dictated by official school holidays and term times, and I really want to make this summer a special one.

However, the summer months have always been the busiest times for me at work, and June to September is when I can’t really take time off, or not very much, as we are producing the biggest issues of the year followed by lots of trips away to various industry meetings and trade shows. So whilst my social media feeds, and especially Instagram, are awash with people on their holidays, having a jolly good time, Becky and Alex have to stay at nursery, while many of their friends are away.

It bothers me, I can’t deny it. I spent my childhood always going on family holidays, and they are still some of my most treasured memories. I want my kids to have the same, to make those memories, experience new places and spend quality time with their Mummy and Daddy.

The other slight glitch is, that I’m slowly running out of holidays for this year, so a big getaway this summer is out of the question anyway. John and I have always spent the majority of our holiday allowances on trips to Germany and Wales to visit our families, and this year I additionally took some time to tag onto my maternity leave, so I’m having to be very economical with my days off to still have a couple left until the end of the year or if something unexpected happens.

But still, I don’t want this summer to just wash away amidst work and holiday restrictions. I want to make this summer count. I want to give Becky some experiences to treasure before she goes off to school.

So we’ve decided to reduce her nursery hours during August (we kept Alex’s as it is, as we can’t afford to lose his full-time place) and I’ve booked every Wednesday of this month off to spend some quality, one-on-one time with her. My plan is to go out and do fun things, and give her a little bit of attention without Alex. She is such a good girl and has been so remarkable lately around Alex and in her role as big sister, I feel she deserves having a bit of attention just on herself and being indulged a little. I'm really looking forward to this Wednesday to make a start. If the weather allows, we will be going to a country park with her friend and her Mummy and enjoy the great outdoors together.

And then, the biggest thing to look forward to, has actually been initiated by John, who has only gone and spontaneously booked us a few days stay in Cornwall for the end of the month. It’s the best idea he’s had in ages, and I can’t wait. It may not be a huge holiday, or a long trip abroad, but it’s still going to be a few days away as a family, in the beautiful surroundings of the South West, and we will make the most of it - and hopefully make precious memories together.


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4 comments

  1. How lovely - yes I too understand the juggle, How lovely to have arranged some quality time... enjoy! xx #sharewithme @MummyFever

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  2. Holidays in England by the sea - best childhood memories for me and my children love it too. You will have a lovely time! Great idea to take a day off a week this month for quality time. I have worked a lot as my children grow up and I recognise the dilemmas and feelings you have. It's not always easy! Have a great time together on your special days. #Sharewithme

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  3. A nice plan and I think that she would treasure those Wednesdays =) #sharewithme

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  4. What a beautiful post and lovely plan. I am trying to do the same and make the most of this summer before B starts school. It seems just around the corner and I am soaking up every minute the last two weeks of our holiday here in the states. Enjoy your special time together. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me. #sharewithme

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