Birthday…

So last week was my birthday and I wasn’t particularly excited about it as I didn’t have anything exciting planned (and I wasn’t keen on hitting 35!).

However, I woke up to discover it was snowing and it looked beautiful as the snowflakes were falling and I couldn’t help thinking that it was my Grandads way of saying Happy Birthday as he knew how much I love snow. It’s been years since its snowed on my birthday, so it felt rather special. Before it was time to do the school run there was just about enough snow to have a snowball fight with my girls which was a giggle although despite it being Mummy’s birthday, they both still got me!!!

Then I had 2 clients to see but I knew that we can’t always have our birthday off, I guess I have been spoilt in recent years having not worked since I was pregnant with my eldest daughter. I couldn’t help recalling 2 years ago when I woke up in a lovely hotel in Prague where I was served prosecco with my breakfast and last year despite being in ‘tiers’ we still made the most of it by going to the beach and paddling!

However, as I drove back from seeing my clients, I couldn’t help but feel honoured to be training to be a counsellor. One of my clients had shared something with me that they had never felt able to share with anyone before and I was incredibly touched and honoured. Some of my peers from my course said that they would have been honest with their clients and told them it was their birthday but I’m not one for drawing attention to myself and I wouldn’t have wanted it to affect their session e.g., if they then felt unable to share anything less than pleasant.

My day was broken up by having a birthday lunch with my Mum which was lovely as I don’t often get chance to spent quality time with her without my girls.

I then had to go to college which I wasn’t thrilled by purely as this meant that I wouldn’t see my girls as they would be asleep by the time, I got home but being the big kid that I am I decided to have a birthday tea the following day…mainly so that my girls could blow out candles! A few of us managed to sneak away early from college and went into a tipi bar for a couple of drinks which was a lovely way to end the day.

My eldest daughter kept asking how old I was, and she rolled her eyes every time I tried to convince her I was 8 or 21 as she didn’t believe me!! So, once she knew I was 35 she was determined to put 35 candles in the cake!! Fortunately, my Mum convinced her not to put that many candles in the cake but there must have been more than 20!!

If it wasn’t enough that my daughter kept asking how old I was my wonderful best friend (are you sensing the sarcasm?!) kept rubbing it in that I was now a year older than her (for the next 6 months) and that I was now in my MID thirties meanwhile she is still in her early thirties!!! Fortunately, we have known each other that long that we can take the mickey out of each other and know that we love each other really.

So, all in all it was a lovely birthday and I felt very lucky to have some special people in my life!

Lockdown part 3….Week 6

What an exciting week we’ve had!! We woke up on Monday morning to snow!!!!! Well, I don’t know who was more excited…me or my girls?!! When I opened the curtains, I was so giddy as soon as I saw it! I have longed for snow and been envious every time somewhere else in the UK has had snow. I was beginning to think we were the only part of the UK to not get any.

It was fair to say we never got dressed so quickly in our lives and we went straight out into the garden! It was my youngest daughters first time in the snow and my eldest was only just one when she first experienced snow so couldn’t remember. It was magical! We all loved it!

We made a snow owl, snowballs, snow angels and caught snowflakes on our tongues!! My youngest daughter soon took after her Mummy and loved having snowball fights…. we walked to my Mums and had a compulsory snowball fight!

There were lots of giggles and a very memorable day! It brought a much-needed distraction and joy during these cold and dreary winter months.

On top of the excitement of snow, once we’d worn ourselves out, we did this weeks http://totbop.co.uk dance class. I have to say it was my favourite dance class so far (not that it’s meant for me!!).

By now the girls know the warmup and cool down routine, then came this week’s first dance which involved lots of silly moves and balancing and we all found it hilarious, we enjoyed the music section where we learnt hand moves including mashed potato!!

This week’s story time was ‘Under the sea’ and we all thoroughly enjoyed swimming around and being sea creatures (I swear my legs are aching from being a very enthusiastic jelly fish!!) (of course, this led to the girls wanting to watch The Little Mermaid afterwards!).

Then came our favourite section – Tot Bop Boogie and this week featured one of my favourite songs, ‘This is me’ from The Greatest Showman, it’s fair to say the volume got turned up and Mummy threw herself into it!! (I do sometimes wonder what people may think if they look in the window but then again, I don’t really care if people think I’m silly!)

But the highlight of this week’s dance class has to be where it shows you a video of this week’s Tot Bop Boogie winner which was my daughters!! To see my eldest daughters’ reaction was very heart-warming! She looked at me in amazement and said, ‘It’s me!’ I was lucky enough to catch her reaction on camera!

The icing on the cake came when the doorbell went and when I answered the door I saw a gift bag on the door step. I couldn’t see anyone and I had no idea who it was from. Inside was an envelope saying ‘Please open me’, and inside the card it read, ‘Just a note to say, that a present can brighten a day. So, whilst there is snow on the ground, get tucked up nice and warm, with a gift you have found – A neighbour.’ There was also a beautiful notebook and chocolates inside. Well, I have never been more touched by someone’s generosity and thoughtfulness! It put a huge smile on my face and made me feel warm inside. I only wish I could thank them!

It’s definitely lifted my spirits this week as I have to admit that I am starting to feel a little despondent about lockdown and feel I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. All this talk of if or when people can go on holiday but for me personally what I crave more than anything is to be able to go and see a few close friends and to be able to give them a hug. I’m not too bothered if cafes, pubs, restaurants, cinemas etc stay closed but to be able to go to their house or for them to come to mine would mean the world to me.

Knowing that they only live a few miles away is incredibly hard especially when I know that some people are breaching lockdown rules. I am lucky to have my girls and my Mum and to have technology, but nothing can replace seeing someone in the flesh and being able to hug them in person.

I imagine when the time comes there will be some happy tears and some very long hugs, in fact I don’t think I’ll want to let go of my best friend!!!!

I’ve got to share something that made me smile this week…my Mum isn’t really a fan of musicals and therefore isn’t keen on one of my girls favourite Disney films, Frozen. However, when I was having a moment of frustration my Mum stood in front of me and started singing the lyrics to ‘Let it go’, best of all she did the actions too which was hilarious!!

I had my counselling course as usual on Thursday which I am now starting to really enjoy (I think because I feel less nervous) and I am starting to come out of my shell. Even my Mum has commented that she has seen I have changed, in the sense that I am stronger and surer of myself which is massive for me.

It definitely gives you a boost when working with new people to practice your counselling skills and to be told positive things. I even volunteered to go first this week which is not like me at all! I normally avoid it and put it off.

I found it harder to be the client this week as I am still getting to know my new triad and being a private person it’s a big deal for me to open up and I was nervous to share things, but I did, and I was surprised what came out of it.

So, although there’s still a long way to go, I am starting to channel my inner self.

I suppose I should touch on the fact that it’s Valentine’s day on Sunday…. this is something I always feel a little odd about. Part of me has always loved the idea as I am romantic and like the idea of being spoilt but I can’t recall a time where I was spoilt. I’ve exchanged cards before but in my previous relationship I think I was given cards out of feeling it should be done rather than genuinely wanting to.

I’m not sure if I would ever want to go for a meal on Valentines day because it’s heavily commercialised and I feel it’s kind of rammed down your throat in terms of expectations of gifts, romance, love etc and also because I don’t think I’d feel comfortable being seen out with someone of the same sex especially when surrounded by lots of loved up couples. I guess it makes me feel a little uncomfortable.

I don’t like the fact that you can now buy a Valentines card for everyone from your parents to your children, friends or pets! I find that odd. Of course, I love my Mum, my girls and my friends but I wouldn’t choose to get them a Valentines card but each to their own. I have however got a large handprint heart in my window as in was suggested it would be a nice thing to do in our village…and we did spot one other house that has decorated their window with hearts on one of our walks this week.

This week I will leave you with this…..

Tot Bop Boogie of the week winner!