Things of beauty...

posted on: Friday, 24 September 2010

So I am getting into the swing of things now...I always have to build in mental adjustment time to any life change. My husband has six weeks of no work; he is in-between jobs. Still contractually bound to one place before he starts at the next. So they call it 'gardening leave'. I have to say our garden is not looking an awful lot different and it's now week three, but we have frequented lots of local eateries for impromptu lunches, the golf club and he are becoming reacquainted and our kids have had more Daddy time since when he was on paternity leave.

You know how mothers carry around an enormous encyclopedic of knowledge and information about their kids; at the drop of hat, shoe sizes, after-school clubs, kit requirements, reading books, best friends, likes/dislikes and everything on the way? For the record size 2 and 10, football, gymnastics and choir, swim kit on Fridays, hockey socks and gum shield recently added, 'Pippy Longstocking' and 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea', I could go on. I find that I carry this with me all the time, writing myself notes, remembering the conflicting drop off times, the netball matches, the play dates. Now though, this burden is shared with their Daddy.  Hey, this is what it's like to co parent 50/50!

Meanwhile as we tripped around our town like tourists the other day, whilst the kids were at school, it felt just lovely. That loveliness topped off I am afraid to say, by boot shopping...yes I think I found this year's perfect pair from Russell and Bromley! Hurrah.

And so for Friday prettiness...and sincerest congratulations to my long distance friend Rhiannon who is getting married to her beau today :-)

via Dustjacket Attic


A Mulberry moment...


Danish simplicity from Georg Jensen...



via Sarah Klassen Haute Design

Isn't this the most beautiful shot?

via it's mary ruffle

By Meg Perotti
Tory Burch flats...want, want, want...but bank balance won't allow...


A stunning retrospective of New York Fashion Week found here...


via from me to you


I have booked tickets to take Boo to the ballet at Christmas...as is tradition!




Sienna Miller...best in her jeans...


I am running alot at the moment, and loving it. Honestly that post-running feeling of happiness is wonderful...



This is for my friend D...living in The Netherlands. She has the capacity to calm me in almost any situation...and sent me a 'keep calm and carry on' package in the post! Her and I should always consider that:

via it's mary ruffle

Home day/Work day...

posted on: Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Home days, work days. I work part time so my week is split between the two. Work days are peppered through the week; so I have this ongoing contrast of my two 'lives'.

via Everything Fabulous

On home days I immerse myself with the children, the school run, the farmhouse, nutritious after-school snacks, re-grouping, cooking, admin, making piles of ironed laundry (will I ever get to the bottom of the ironing basket?!). My mind empties of the deadlines and strategy and corporate manoeuvring of my work days. What I find bizarre is that in each 'life' I am comfortable. I miss neither one when I do the other. Very rarely do I do any work on home days, other than tracking the state of my inbox. At work, I will sometimes be in a meeting and catch myself, with a shock; the realisation that I haven't even thought about my own children for an hour or two.

I am lucky to have this delineation and the chance to do both. I figure that opportunity is a rare one; maybe I have found and maintained, at least on paper, that pinnacle of the work/life balance. But in reality it can be...confusing. On home days I think and feel so little about work that I wonder why I persist in the double life. Yes, it's a means to an end but there are other consequences which every now and then I am fiercely reminded of. The project that I worked on earlier this year was a case in point, when nothing about life was balanced as I struggled with the professional challenges of an all-encompassing work effort can bring. For sure, home life suffered and the 'wounds' from that are only now making themselves known - you know how sometimes it takes six months for an effect to show in a child's behaviour?

So I keep on - amongst some criticism that I take on too much and the knowledge that my kids may look back on these years and recall me being rather frazzled at times, rushing from work to collect them after school; one of the only Mums at the school gates in heels and a suit, blackberry in hand.


...on home days I bake cakes just like this... ;-)
As I have said before and many commenters have reassured me there is no right answer. I notice though that now my children are older my contemporaries are talking about going back to work, just as the children are more self-sufficient at school. To me, having worked throughout following maternity leave, I would say my children still need me now, perhaps even more. In a way, if I didn't work, that would be of more use to them now than when they were toddlers. The fact is they are so much more aware now...and that awareness I feel when they comment that I spend too much time in front of my laptop or when they know they have to fall quiet in the car if 'Mummy's boss' calls.

Today is a home day, so I am going to zhush...potter...enjoy the view and be there after school full of smiles, in flat shoes, off to look for conkers for the school conker competition...

...the view from my window this morning...

Things of beauty...and some thoughts...

posted on: Friday, 3 September 2010

This week has been all about pastures new. In amongst some serious soul-searching and deliberation we decided to go for it and my husband accepted the new job. It was time to make the leap and it's a leap indeed, as he had been with the same company for 21 years. Man and boy. It's the same company that I work for still; think household name, multinational corporation. Before him his father worked there. Along with his mother and his brother in their time. To say it's a family institution is an understatement! So it was with a heavy heart that he tendered his resignation and we now face a very new chapter. So much of our time together is tied up in that company - strange as that may seem. Sometimes places and things can be defining.


I blogged about this decision a week or two ago (seems like a lifetime!), when the new offer was so fresh and exciting, all we could marvel at was the future. Now, with decision well and truly made, the past seems to have become very relevant and so you find me very nostalgic and pensive in this post. In corporate speak this would be described as the change curve...


Notable that even when I have known him 18 years, he still has the capacity to surprise me. When things got really tough at the end when his company were in the final (fairly ugly) throes of trying to keep him, he gathered himself up and showed such integrity and bravery in walking away. Taking the risk. Taking the road less travelled. Made my heart swell. So here's to pastures new...a different road.



You never know what you are going to get in life...

via it's mary ruffle






All you can do is try to live well, make your choices, follow your principles... ;-)

via tiny white daisies

Gorgeously casual Kate Bosworth









There has been a lot of this in our house lately...planning and re-planning, weighing up, thinking it through.

Revolutionary Road
A fair amount of this on his behalf. Posthumous portrait of President John F. Kennedy by Aaron Shikler painted in 1970.


A some of this on mine...my friend D loves this picture, it always make me think of her...'Thoughts of You' by Jack Vettriano.




Funny how I just know this about him and this week he's proved it yet again...


Sometimes you have to look through a different pane of life...


Embrace those new pastures...this is the view from the highest hill around here...

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