Work & Family

Working Mum's, Real Life, Real Issues, Real People

Where’s Your Happy Place?

Image¬†Good morning campers! The sun is shining, the birds are singing and the view of the waterfall is nothing shy of perfection. In reality the wind is a’blowin’, the clouds are grey and I am sitting in my dressing gown at my office desk! Just to be clear, I am fully dressed and have not been on the school run in my PJ’s – this would simply not be acceptable.

The picture I have included today is just one of my many ‘happy places’. It is a waterfall in Kildale Forest, North Yorkshire. I adore this place and visit often. Not only in person but in mind alike. Places like this are great if your day isn’t going all that well. Set aside five minutes to relax and take stock. Sit back and think of the place you love. If it’s somewhere you have visited, feel the air on your cheeks. Take in the outdoor scents typical of a dense forest. Allow your mind to wander for just a small amount of time. It works wonders!

My youngest turned 4 yesterday. I remember bringing her home from the hospital when reality suddenly hit……. ‘Uh oh – what have we done’ I thought (or similar words to that effect)! Three children – two of them under the age of two. Perhaps this is where my anxiety all started! As most parents do though I (we) muddled through and did what was necessary to ensure the girls were fed, watered and happy. Back then I said to my husband ‘Give it 3-4 years and things will be easier’ – wishing my girls lives away! Sure enough it is easier today. I can now take a shower without wondering if one child is busy decorating the wall with nail polish whilst another gives herself a fancy new haircut – both of these scenarios have occurred by the way!

The birthday girl had a fantastic day and I realised just how lucky I am when all three sat together at the breakfast table opening gifts, giggling and being kind to one another. To me – that’s family life. Those snippets of unconditional love and acceptance that seem to pop up just when you need them. As a mother, you take a step back and admire your creation(s), feeling extremely proud. Back in the real world it’s all ‘put your washing in the basket’, ‘have you fed the dog’, ‘who’s turn is it to load the dishwasher’, ‘please don’t push your sister down the stairs again’, ‘stop fighting over that spec of dust on the carpet’ and such like. When it all comes together, the laughing, smiling and kindness makes it all worthwhile. Who’d have thought it – my kitchen, that scene – another happy place…….

My day today mainly consists of writing, writing and then some more writing whilst drinking the tastiest coffee in all the land! I shall elaborate on this in further posts. Anyone who has a love for coffee should certainly try the blend I drink which comes from a temerarious coffee baron I recently discovered!

Business is certainly taking off, keeping myself and partner in crime busy! Our partnership developed towards the end of February this year and so far we are working extremely well together. His strengths are where my weaknesses lay and vice-versa. Straight talking and honesty works well for us and I am quietly confident this venture will be a huge success. For the first time in a long time I feel I’m doing something worthwhile that impacts mine and my families lives positively. Life is good. In fact life is great at the minute – I still enjoy visiting my happy place from time to time though.

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My First Post

Hello one and all. I’m Helen and this is my blog (my blog says hi too)! I have decided to start writing about work and family life and the issues surrounding its balance. I am confident that many of my readers will identify with a whole host of the comments and points raised over the coming weeks, months and years.

Family Life

I guess I should start with an introduction. I am 32 years old (soon to be 33 – eek)! I have a wonderfully supportive husband and three beautiful children. Our eldest daughter is 10 years old, laid back, clever, friendly, sensitive and a pleasure to be around. The middle girl is 6 and owns the biggest pair of blue eyes the world has ever seen! Stunning she is. This one is highly intelligent, bossy, loud, full of attitude and hilarious – great sense of humor (wow – I sound like I’m advertising my kids on eBay – they are NOT for sale)! Our youngest girl is 4 on Wednesday and the size of a 2.5 year old. Considering her size she is VERY loud! Her volume button seems to be broken and the decibel’s she can reach make for painful ears. Sporting huge brown eyes and a killer smile along with a ‘bolshy’ and determined personality, she will most certainly break some hearts. Her dream job is to be a ‘tooth fairy’. Failing that a ‘police dog’ will suffice. Yes – we were surely blessed with three girls and this is why my husband insisted we at least own male dogs! I fear for his sanity in later years.


I’m not high flying and have not made my first million. Does this matter? To me it used to, yes. I wanted it all. I wanted to have the perfect career, earning the best money in order to provide my family with the moon on a stick. What have I realised? I bet many of you know what is coming…… I have learned the hard way that my children come first. I can’t get the first few years of their young lives back – I worked right through them. Luckily this concept raised itself to me back in November. Sometimes bad things happen but all for the greater good.

I have set up business in partnership with a close family friend and will comment in further blogs about how this is getting on. So far I am loving it. Good days, disappointing days, all in all a great move for me personally. I don’t have to answer to anyone other than my business partner and my own harsh rules and regulations. I’m a perfectionist unfortunately – something I always thought was a strength but have realised is in fact a curse – to be continued……. I take the girls to school most days and collect them every Friday. I am at home working. I am relaxed and at 5pm I step out of my office before making my way to the kitchen for a catch up with my favourite people.

Personal Life

My sister is my world. She is my family (outside of those living at home). Dad passed away almost 11 years ago and the mother – maybe we will elaborate later – maybe we won’t. This blog is about subjects and people that matter.

I live with anxiety and bouts of depression. No sympathy or ‘ooooo’s’ and ‘ahhhhh’s’ required – it’s manageable. The anxiety is like a larger dose of butterflies – large moths if you will. This in turn leads to slight depression. Learning to recognise triggers and deal with symptoms has been a learning curve but one I have mastered quite successfully. Over the last couple of months I have learned to control an embarrassing neck twitch and have just about stopped shaking on a morning. Healthy diet and exercise……. I’m working towards these. Friends – I’m lucky to know a handful of truly beautiful people who have always been there for me. They know me and understand me. We can go months without contact then turn up at the door – it’s fine. That’s what friendship is about. Highly important to me.

This is a snippet of me. I have lots to say. Plenty of opinions, stories and tales to tell. I am planning on writing at least twice a week so come back soon and read my blog again! Feel free to leave comments. It would be great to know how other people cope with work, family and a busy life in general.