The past few days have been ones of panic. Panic that my poor, hard done by boys have obviously had their childhood ruined by not jetting off to exotic climes this year. Filled with unnecessary concern and passports in hand, I was on the verge of pressing 'continue' on a last minute jaunt that we can ill afford (old houses are expensive), when I realised that the boys have said nothing other than what an amazing few weeks they've had (not to mention that my littlest's passport appears to be several months out of date, anyway).
With our days having been mostly lazy, I've had the nagging sensation that we simply haven't done enough. Every minute hasn't been filled so therefore every moment hasn't been made the most of. Which, with a clearer, less gin-fuelled head, I'm aware is complete and utter nonsense. Slowing down is important. And doing very little on occasion, is even more important. That's how you recharge your depleted batteries. That's how you give your brain and body a rest. And that's what holidays are for. Right? Or am I just trying to convince myself here?
The slight sense of unease might also be due to the fact that this is the first summer where the boys have taken a small step back from me and have been spending time getting lost in their own hobbies - audio books and Warhammer in the case of my seven year old, and Lego building and drawing for the five year old.
For those of you who have been following my blog since the beginning, you'll understand what a momentous feat this is .... they've actually been playing together.
With a minimal amount of fighting and arguing. And virtually no refereeing required. It's been a revelation.
Perhaps it's this slight change, them stepping back, that also makes me feel like we haven't done enough. Maybe it's simply that we haven't done AS much together. Is this what happens as your children get older? Is that what's going on? Crikey, I feel like this is turning in to a bit of a Carrie Bradshaw column with all these questions and internal analysis.
But deep down I know they'll need me for just that little bit longer because bigger and older though they are, they're still unable to open packets of marshmallows without assistance. And that's a life skill I'm holding back on teaching them for quite some time yet.
This last photo was a surprise snap as I pressed the button by mistake as I was turning the camera off. It's so wonky but I love it.
Thick as thieves, oh so cheeky, mouths full of sweet treats, and sitting happily in the garden.
No exotic climes needed.
The gorgeous tops that we're all wearing in this post were kindly gifted to us by Lighthouse (we also have their rain coats which are amazing). The boys love the rugby shirts (my eldest is wearing the ocean blue one and my youngest the eclipse stripe which is currently on sale) and the hoodies are soft and snuggly so perfect to pull on now the evenings are getting slightly cooler (here's the red one and here's the blue one). Personally, I love Lighthouse's Breton tops (I'm wearing the pistachio stripe one) but size up if you're busty ... I normally wear a size 12/14 but had to opt for a 16. And the sweatshirt is going to become a staple for autumn walks. Thank you so much, Lighthouse!