Friday 26 June 2020

Lockdown - We've kinda loved it

Anyone else kinda feel like lockdown is over even though it's technically not? 

It's been a weird ol' three months hasn't it - to be completely honest I can't believe we're three months down the line but in some ways, those three months have been quite wonderful. We've missed our family terribly and I cannot wait to give them all a very long overdue hug but for our own little family unit of three, it's been just what we needed. 

This time has been the longest we've all spent together since Arran's paternity finished in November 2017 which makes me kinda sad. Sure we live together and have our evenings and weekends to make memories but in the midst of work, everyday life, chores and everything else we've never just had weeks to do as we please. 

It's been freeing, it's put a lot into perspective and it has really made us think about what we want our lives to look like going forward.

With the beginning of lockdown being drenched in glorious sunshine, it has meant we were able to get out for our daily walk most days - we found new forest walks, gorgeous local areas with stunning gardens and the most picturesque houses, fields to run around and a coastal path to follow. 

It's been lovely just getting out into the world collecting stones and leaves and dipping our toes in lapping waves. Days out to zoos, country parks and theme parks may be nice but only being allowed within our local area has made us realise just how much more there was around us. We've always been the kind of people that will pack ourselves up on a weekend and go out exploring and this has just reaffirmed our love for doing that. 

Talking of nature, we've found ways to implement that within learning games for Joshua such as counting stones, picking out the colours of different leaves and seeing what animals we can spot when we're out and about - we're yet to find the Gruffalo though! 

One thing Arran and I have both loved is watching Joshua develop - it's something Arran misses a lot due to work so instead of me trying to capture photos and videos so he doesn't miss out, he's been able to see if for himself and it's been lovely. 

Joshua has come on leaps and bounds - he's talking so much more, he's nailed his alphabet, numbers and colours and we've just had a lot of fun. Sure we have downtime with Thomas the Tank Engine films and plenty of playing with trains but I feel as though we all need that now and again. It blows our minds that that little dot we welcomed into our lives two and half years ago now sits and has full-blown conversations with us and my favourite thing to do is just watch him play and talk with his trains - he has the most wonderful imagination. 

Lockdown has also seen us try out a lot of new recipes - Joshua is obsessed with cooking so much so we bought him a kitchen for his birthday so we've baked cakes, he's helped me with dinner and he's thrown a lot of bubbles around while washing up afterwards too! Hopefully, we'll nail that Coffee and Walnut cake soon. 

This time has also given me a chance to slow down. In normal circumstances, I'm a stay at home mum during the day and blogger in the evenings - whether that's working at home, out at events or away on press visits. I also run Southampton Bloggers which is a blogging network in Southampton so my time is usually pretty chocker with things to do and having everything cancel one by one in March meant I really did have a lot of spare time all of a sudden and it's been nice. 

I've always read a lot anyway but this has given me the chance to read more, I've started  doing yoga for an hour each day, I've enjoyed quizzes over Zoom with my best friends, I've picked up adult colouring books again and spent time alongside Joshua colouring, I have an embroidery hoop to start and I've tried my hand at baking more adventurous cakes and the weeks I've had to just stop and recharge have been more valuable than I ever realised they would be. 

The last three months have shown both of us how go, go, go we were and not being able to do that has made us take stock of what we were doing, slow down and really appreciate the smaller things in life. 

So what are we going to take forward from lockdown? Quite a bit...

We want our lives filled with love, family and friends, special moments and inside jokes only us three know plus plenty of running wild and cake baking - and hopefully a wedding at some point! 

For me, I'm going to be looking at my job and events differently, I'm going to learn to say no and I'm going to keep (most) of my evenings free for Arran and I rather than sitting at an event I felt I had to be at. I'm excited - lockdown has been the wake-up call I never knew I needed, I just wish it had been under different circumstances. 

Sometimes the smaller things in life really are the most wonderful.

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