LOVEly guest post by Mel from Armoire, Pegs and Casserole

Hi everyone, I’m Mel from Armoire, Pegs and Casserole and I’m so pleased to be guest blogging for Elodie while she takes some time to get to know her beautiful baby. I have three small children myself and know how precious these first few weeks are to adjust into new routines. It’s also the time when we need those around us to lend a hand and offer support. While I can’t drop a home cooked meal into Elodie, as I live far away in New Zealand, one of the things I can do is offer a little advice.

PJ walk on the beach

Last night I had one of the best nights I’ve had in a long time. It was a date with my three kids. Their “Papa” and my husband, is away on business at the moment, so to make us feel his absence a little less, we had a movie night. I ordered pizza, bought ice cream, turned the iPhone off and the four of us snuggled under a blanket on the couch and watched the original version of Annie, a movie I had watched when I wasn’t much older than my eldest boy who is six this year.
Apart from the wonderful feeling of us cuddling uninterrupted for a couple of hours, I revelled in the expressions of each of their little faces through the various scenes and the questions they asked. Like clockwork, they belly laughed at everything I found so funny when I was young and they looked in wonder at the song and dance routines.
I’m more aware of these little moments lately because I realised that I haven’t been doing them. While I would take the kids to the park or the beach, I wouldn’t be completely “there” with them because there would always be the distraction of my iPhone. At home while I might be building a train track or Lego village, I’d get up every so often to look at my MacBook that’s always sitting open on the kitchen table.

Many of us a guilty of this, I’m not writing about anything new here. The common theme during conversations with friends who had their first child around the same time as me is that we just don’t seem to be giving our kids the same amount of attention as we once did. It’s not the hours we’re giving them; it’s the percentage of “us” we’re giving them while we’re doing it. I believe this could be even more prevalent for us bloggers who work from home and often in our “spare” time.
The catalyst for this awareness came when I read an interview with Si from French By Design on SF Girl By Bay; she mentioned that she tries to have tech free weekends to dedicate to the family. I thought this was such a fantastic idea, yet I found it rather interesting how uncomfortable I felt with the concept. Perhaps I could start with just Sundays?
So I guess my little piece advice for Elodie and any new mums to keep in the back of their minds for a little time down the track when their babies grow: Take the time for yourselves, that is without saying ever so important, but when it’s your little ones’ time, turn off the computers, put away the iPads and phones. Just stop, be there and enjoy. Your kids will feel it, and so will you.

Congratulations Elodie, you’re in for the most magnificent ride of your life!

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15 thoughts on “LOVEly guest post by Mel from Armoire, Pegs and Casserole

  1. Congrats Elodie! Welcome to the world little one….

    Such a great post Mel – firstly just wanted to say I too love ‘Annie’ and watched it not that long ago with my own boys – there was a bit of persuasion as they thought it was a ‘girl’ film but they really enjoyed it!
    Your thoughts are spot on – we are all guilty of it and life is changing real fast but because we know what life was like without the un-necessary ‘distractions’ we know how much more we can be ‘there’ for our kids, husband, family, our friends and our community…the list goes on!
    I think a Tech free day is a great start! We limit the boys Tech time and maybe I should set myself that rule too….

  2. Congratulations Elodie! I hope you are enjoying your time with your precious new baby. Lovely heart-felt post Mel. I had some much needed tech-free time during the school holidays to really focus on the kids and it felt soooo good! I just need to try and slot it in more regularly. One day of the weekend would be ideal. I absolutely love your movie night idea, and I’ve been thinking of getting Annie for a while now as I saw it when I was about Roman’s age and I loved it, and can’t wait to see their reactions. You are such a great Mum, and you’ve inspired me (as always), thanks Mel x x

  3. Lovely post Mel, and great to discover your blog Elodie – happy to be popping over from the UK. Being present is such a difficult thing for all of us nowadays, not just with new technology but also the pace of modern life and trying to squeeze so much into everyday! I had a Eureka moment the other week when I realised we wouldn’t dream of interrupting work or an important meeting by checking our phones, yet we do it all the time with our kids. From that moment on I vouched to have the same respect for Noah – my 5 year old – as I do for any other job – why should he expect any less, also we need to remember to lead by example and would hope when they’re old enough they will show us the same respect xx

  4. What a wonderful post Mel and so so true. I was just thinking the other day that I’m glad iphones and the like weren’t around when my children were younger (they’re 15 & 20 now) as it would have distracted me from them for sure. Sometimes I wonder what it’s all for. You always write so beautifully and from the heart. Congratulations Elodie on the birth of your first child, enjoy motherhood.

  5. Dear Elke, Gudy and Joy. Thank you so much for your sweet words. Dear Elodie, it’s been such a pleasure to guest post here, the biggest thank you for asking me. Those moments with the newborn are just magic, it almost (almost!) makes me want to have another just thinking about it. Hugs to you all from Auckland! Mel x

  6. Hello Mel,
    thank you so much for this great post! It is so true and so well written. I was thinking about it last night at 04:30 in the morning when feeding Ella in her little nursery. Thinking about how much I enjoyed being there with her in the middle of night with no distraction such as the Internet, smartphone or just my telephone ringing.
    I will try to keep remembering that when she grows up.
    I hope to meet soon in person. Maybe the next time you come to France. Who knows!
    xxx
    Elodie

  7. Heart feeling and very honest! It applies to so many situations nowadays but spending quality time with your little ones is just something you can not recover, I guess.hey grow up so fast. Big hug to the two of you!

  8. Hi, thanks Mel for this absolutely true words. It made me remember some “familiy events” like yours in the past (my children are little older now). Watching an old movie from out childhood, when eldest son tried to escape with the words “not cool”, but in the end very emotional watching an laughing with us – that’s a very deep impression and makes the family band a little stronger. Another important thing is, as you promise something, it’s promised. It would be recognized well even if the child has forgotten it. “You can rely on me.” <3
    – Elke

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