As a somewhat perfectionist personality (this doesn't mean my house is tidy - just that I agonise over its untidyness!) I constantly obsess over if I am getting mothering right. Thankfully, I know lots of other mothers are doing the same. I've just read Blue's lovely prose/poem (Sept 18) about parenting and it's good to know we are all in the same boat - just doing the best we can. (I'll try and put in the link but I'm still practising). (http://bluejeuls.blogspot.com/)
So when we have a day without rushing, watching too much tv, eating junk food or playing on the computer I feel like a better mother. My memories of my childhood are so happy (apart from going to new schools, but that's another story). At six, I had the run of the tiny outback town where we lived. We also spent a lot of time on sheep stations, playing in shearing sheds and helping the jackeroos muster on horseback. My parents took us on many many picnics when we would make a fire in a dry creek bed and boil the billy for tea. When I was just a little older, we moved to a slightly bigger town which I was free to explore on my bike as long as I was home before dark. I'm not sure if Mum knew my friends and I were sometimes walking along the railway tracks out of town! Anyway...back to the present moment.
Last week during the school holidays, I swopped children with friends who also work part-time so that our 5 year olds could play with a friend for the day while Mum went to work. It's a great system. So, with my two girls and a young friend, we headed to a seaside town to play on the beach (in brown mud, but that's ok), climb some trees and explore the big playground. We had a great time getting muddy feet, sandy legs and dirty clothes. I tried to take some photographs to capture the children's joy at running free but soon realised that three children running in all directions needed my undivided attention. So....here they are. Three happy children (and one happy mother behind the camera) at the beach.