Welcome back (to me)(from me)

So this is it - this is a picture of my desk on the day that I restart my blog.

Sunglasses for inside - check.
Laptop with winter desktop image of eldest child when he was younger than youngest child (must update) - check.
Random awesome can design I brought home from lunch with the husband (more on that later) yesterday, so I could make it into a pen pot recycle it in three weeks - check.
Barry M Gelly Hi Shine Nail Varnish in Grapefruit - check.

It wasn't really how I imagined it would restart.

It's been 4 years since I last wrote a blog, and a lot has happened since then. I tried to restart it when I went back to work after my first child but it was short-lived, because well, you know.. kids. I've not changed the name of it, The Tea Shop Diaries, used to be what I thought about whilst I dreamed about opening a little Tea Shop. This was pre-kids, pre-every-bugger-has-a-tea-shop, and pre-never-sleeping-ever-again. So now its more like the diaries of someone who finds themselves in those tea shops, trying to jam a buggy holding a flailing toddler in-between the person with the laptop having a serious phone call and the young trendy couple trying to pour their artisan tea-blend, without getting a death glare.

After I had my second boy in 2014 (still doesn't sleep through the night - plenty on that later) I started going to 'mums' meetings'. Like proper ones. Not like the ones I usually go to at the soft play where you just moan about your kids and how much they DON'T SLEEP or DON'T EAT (just mine? fine) even though I love those kind of mum meetings (and a good old rant whilst Hairy the Monster keeps the toddlers from whinging at you for 20 seconds is bliss) believe me. These were different, these were meetings for mums who, even though they had kids, still wanted to be awesome humans in the general world, except a lot of them didn't feel awesome, and a lot of them didn't feel part of the general (shall we call it 'general' or 'pre-kid') world as much as they used to. Some didn't want to return to their pre-kid much-loved job anymore, because it didn't hold as much priority in their life as it once did, or the bosses weren't being very helpful about returning on a part-time basis. Some were just Stay at Home Mums who didn't want to always stay at home, some were starting new businesses around school hours (OMG they are NEVER in school, I mean come on 6 hours a day and a week off every 5 - lightweights) and some, like me, just thought it would be cool to meet other mums in a different setting, and it was, it was very cool.

Anyway, they were all awesome - these mums - and it made me realise that I actually wasn't that unusual in feeling well - really, really pissed off at the fact I am now a 'housewife' a lot of the time, when I want to be able to do my job (which I love) like I used to. But I'm so torn – my kids are totally awesome at least 4% of the time and I can't (and won't) put my work before them, but I still want to work and be available to my clients at a drop of a hat, but I can't be because perhaps I have baby swimming that day, or perhaps one (or both) have chicken pox, or its the school holidays, or we organised a playdate, or I need to get the little ones feet measured because he shouts 'ow' everytime I jam his little toes into his shoes and arrrrrrrghhhhhhhh, forever and ever and ever amen.

So this is my little area, to rant (mainly), to review (probably gin), to direct you to and away from the good and bad places to see things whether it be kids-based, design-based or just life-based.

Next post: I'll be name checking a load of completely awesome mums, some of which I know, some I don't and some I just stalk heavily in the local area until they become my friend... (once I have worked out how to make a link list!)

Oh, I'm Lynda by the way, I'm 42, Joe is 5, Cass is 21 months and Matt is 38. I like Gin, peace and quiet and Paw Patrol. (One of these is a lie).

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