How waking up at 6am changed my life…

I don’t know about you, but I was always one for snoozing the alarm when the morning would roll around. Just 5 more mins pleaseee!

Doing this was a bad habit that I needed to break. It made me fly around in the mornings, be all over the place, forgetting things, being snappy, being irritated, unorganised, not having time for breakfast, being hangry and just a tornado of anxiety rushing around leaving a trail of disorganised mess behind me. (Which I would later regret as I would be the one tidying it all up later in the day 😄🤷🏻‍♀️)…It literally made no sense, I would swear to myself that I would go to bed at a reasonable time that night, so I wouldn’t be so tired in the mornings, Always thought of it but never did it 🙈… this began to really grate on me so I finally decided to change something.

One day two years ago I set just one alarm for 6am, switched the snooze option off and fell asleep. Morning came around and the alarm went off. Now I knew this was it, no snooze, I rather get my arse up now or i’ll fall back asleep and end up late for work, late for taking Luca to school and just plain LATE for the day ahead. So with that one alarm I dragged myself up out of bed and began my morning routine. Luca still fast asleep so I was able to get ready in peace, which for a parent is one of the best things! 🙌🏻 I was able to think clearly so I didn’t forget anything, I was able to have breakfast and even have a little tidy up before we left,?so I didn’t have as much to do when I got home. My day was already going well before I even left the door. I felt so much calmer, organised and motivated for the day ahead. This feeing was something that stuck with me. The feeling of being rushed is awful, it’s my absolute pet hate. It’s enough to make you throw your bags on the ground and say thats it i’m not adulting today. But this newfound having time to spare in the mornings and being able to leisurely get through my morning routine and chores was amazing. So thats how the 6am get up stuck.

Being up before your children works so well too. At the time it can be hard to muster up the motivation to get out of bed while they are still asleep, but it’s so worth it when you get your own time to get yourself and the house ready before they even wake up. It makes the whole day go smoother I promise.

A morning routine sets your tone for the day so heres how waking up earlier can change your life for the better :

• You will become more organised.

• Increased productivity.

• You will become more motivated.

• Have extra time to focus on yourself and your thoughts, gaining more clarity over your life.

• Your days will go smoother.

• You will gain a better bedtime routine – from waking up early, your bedtime routine falls into place much easier. Your too tired to watch one more episode on netflix.

• You will be able to have your own time which makes you feel more fulfilled and content with your life.

• Your house will become more organised.

• You will be on time.

• Reduce anxiety.

• You will have time for things that make you feel good – e.g yoga/meditation/breakfast.

• You become a better planner.

• Better sleeping pattern.

• Better concentration.

Why not give it a go? It took one alarm for me to change, and i’m so glad I did. My mornings have become easier and I feel happier.

Ps. I’m a firm believer in balance, so I only set 6am alarms during the week and I give myself a break on the weekends. I usually don’t have to be up and out early during then, so i’m able to enjoy a little lie in. As i’m a mum I class 7am on a weekend a lie in 😄 but at least i’m able to enjoy getting up with the children without rushing around. It’s the best of both worlds really 🙌🏻.

As always thank you for stopping by ☺️

Frankie x

Gratitude Journals for children

Gratitude journaling is something that only takes a few minutes per day but can have a big positive impact on your ls and your childrens holistic development, mental health and overall wellbeing.

A gratitude journal is simply something you do to keep track of all the good things your thankful for in life. Usually kept in a book form, you write what you are thankful for that day and what the best bit of the day was etc. No matter what your day looked like, there is ALWAYS something to be thankful for. It’s incredibly easy to start, simply buy a notebook, a pen and start writing daily, about the positives and goodness in your days. The more you focus on the goodness in your life it enables you to gain a different perspective. I whisper thank you to myself continually throughout the day, as soon as I wake in the morning I say thank you out loud and at night I gather all my thankful thoughts and write them down in my book.

Gratitude journals are for everyone! Adults and children of all ages. I started one over a year ago and seeing first hand how powerful this simple tool is to enhance your happiness I decided Luca should try one out too. We do ours after a bath at bedtime, Luca is winding down and able to focus on his thoughts. I find this time very special for both of us, it’s a meaningful bonding time where we are together without any distractions and are able to think about our day clearly. I’m able to get a better insight to Luca’s day and his thoughts. The gratitude journal is full of benefits for us all, but I especially think it’s great for children to start as early as possible because:

• They become more present and mindful

• Improves attitude and builds character

• Become more self aware

• Reduces stress & worries

• Opens communication

• Gives them a different perspective on life

• Develop a sense of thankfulness and gratitude for even the littlest things in life

• Improve emotional well being

• Acknowledging and appreciating the simple things in life

• Allows parents to understand their children on a different level

• Gives children a positive mind set

• Builds resilience

• Promotes life long skills they can carry on through adulthood

• Produces feelings of accomplishment and belonging

• Attracts more good things to come their way

Gratitude Journaling is a way to de stress, calm down, unwind and become mindful. Especially important if your busy and nonstop all day, you and your children need down time to just be in the moment to ground yourselves. Once you start to practise gratitude you will see opportunity to give thanks where ever you go. ☺️

A page out of Luca’s journal 🙏🏻

Reception to year 1 transition tips

How are all your littles doing settling back into school and their new classes? I felt this year was a big jump for Luca leaving early years 😢 and starting to learn the national curriculum. (I love everything about early years) Having worked within nursery/reception classes and higher years I myself was able to see the jump that Luca was about to make.

In Reception children learn in a play based, free flowing environment thats mainly child led, they may be guided from time to time by staff but ultimately they get to choose the areas they want to learn/play and with whom. Where as Year 1 tends to be more formal the national curriculum sets clear learning goals across all subject areas. The teaching is adult led and children have less choice in what they do. Children often miss the freedom they had being able to learn independently through play to now having to focus attention and sit down at a table for longer periods. So we wanted to support Luca with his transition as best we could and thought they could help someone else too. So below i’m sharing some tips that we implement that are proving to help ☺️

• Positivity – First of all above anything else is to always remain positive about new changes coming your child’s way. Luca himself was actually quite apprehensive about starting Year 1. The day he went to visit his new class he came home and said ” Mamma, they have no toys just tables and chairs”. In response I always gave and continue to give Luca a positive outlook on this new chapter for him.

• Limit extra curriculum activities – I didn’t want Luca to become overwhelmed by having to be somewhere doing something everyday of the week. I wanted him to be able to enjoy his own free time without having a busy schedule every evening after school when he’s already doing so much throughout his school day.

• Give your children free time – The biggest tip I can give thats really helped us so far is this – Allow your child to do what they like (within reason of course) when they get home. As soon as Luca gets home from school he says ” It’s my time to choose now isn’t it”. Luca gets free time between coming home and bedtime to be as child led as possible and to do his own thing. Usually choosing to play with his friends next door, build lego, go on the trampoline or swing set, play with his toys or just to watch a show, he’s able to choose how he spends his time just like in reception class. He has time to just be a kid and use his imagination. This has really helped Luca not feel constantly directed and gives him the freedom he wants and needs.

• Don’t start homework, spellings or reading books as soon as they get home from school – If you think just when you get home from work you need some downtime, your child needs the same. Imagine coming home from work to then be doing your job from home as soon as you get back, you would go a little stir crazy. It’s the same with our children give them a break to just be children without a work load. We don’t do any school related activities when Luca gets home, I want to give him a break even if it’s just for a couple of hours. We do reading books at bedtime along side our bedtime story and homework and spellings are done in increments throughout the evenings usually sometime after tea. I can usually tell when Luca has had enough and loosing concentration so we leave it for another day when he’s able to fully engage and give his best shot at it again.

Hope these little tips help you and your children settle into their new class ☺️🍎📚✏️🚸

Children don’t play like they used to…

Are we as a nation stressing ourselves and our children out by planning and cramming as many playdates, after school activities, and kids clubs into our week as we can?

Are we over scheduling our children’s lives full of things we think they should be doing ?

This is something I feel incredibly strong about within todays society. I personally think some parents can go into a competition frenzy of ‘ look how many activities my child does, my child does more than your child’. Parents are spread increasingly thin, they are always rushing, stressed, feeling over scheduled and are chaining themselves to a tiresome weekly routine, forgetting how children used to build their character and resilience through play.

We are starting our children at school at the tender age of 3 which is a whole different topic I won’t go into haha. But I just hope people don’t loose sight of how important it is for children to have the freedom to just play.

Gone are the days that we can allow our children to play as we once did. It’s crazy to think that at 24 I had what they call an ‘old fashioned childhood’. Full of making my own decisions, knocking on for my friends, making mud pies, playing knock a door run, building my own resilience, making dens, having freedom, climbing trees, having a full day ahead of me to explore and make my own games up, but knowing I should head back home when the streetlights came on. A bath and my tea would be waiting back at home for me, ready to go back out the next morning and do it all over again.

I often think back to those times as some of the best learning experiences of my life. I believe that the resilience I have as an adult today was created from those days being free as a child. I would have hated having my days filled up with all different activities/classes every day of the week missing out on playing with my friends. My parents promoted child initiated play, hobbies and activities into my life. They allowed me to get to an age where I developed my own interests and acted upon them at that stage. For example I developed a passion for horses so my dad paid for horse riding lessons every weekend. When he could see how much I thrived and loved being around horses he bought me my own horse. It wasn’t forced on me, It was me making a choice for myself as a child that thats what I wanted to spend my time doing. But what I see happening in society today is we are giving our children hobbies, we are enrolling them into all sorts of activities filling all our children’s free time up thinking they need to be kept busy at all times.

Can you imagine our children have a day at home with no plans and nothing to do, whatever will happen to our children if they are left to be bored and having to make their own games up…

Please don’t feel like a bad parent for not having your child enrolled in every club going. Some of my best childhood memories and lessons learnt come from the days where I had nothing but myself, the outdoors and my imagination.

We all parent different and I will never judge anyone else’s parenting. I’m to busy judging my own parenting style 😂. I want to get it right so badly as we all do, we all want to do the best for our children. But just think about how children used to learn through play. If your feeling stressed by your schedule maybe it’s time to change it. Now I know times have changed, I myself would not allow Luca to play out alone, so I ensure I do the things I did on my own as a child with him. I supervise from a distance, I allow him to take risks, go up to children and make friends, allow him to socialise without my interference, I ensure we get outdoors everyday, I allow him to climb a tree without my input promoting risk taking and allowing to learn for himself, I let Luca make mudpies, splash in puddles, play in dirt, pick bugs up, be around animals, ride his bike and run through fields. I allow Luca to have lots of free time, lots of child initiated play and activities where he chooses what he wants to do.

One thing I would love to change for children these days is for them to get outdoors more, learn more through nature rather than tv programmes. For them to put the ipads down and not be so over scheduled and to just allow children to be children. ❤️

What do you think?

What would you tell your 16 year old self?

 

Thanks for popping over, time to get all nostalgic and head back to our teenage years… I would love for people to get involved with this post. Leave a comment down below or send me a message on instagram on some of the life lessons you have learnt along the way. You never know who may be reading this post, and if we can share some wisdom that can help someone with things we wish we knew back then that would be amazing. Although I believe in not holding on to regrets I have realised that there is some advice I was never given that I may have found useful.

Dear 16 year old self,

  • Don’t be in such a rush to grow up… I left home when I was 16 and to think back now I was so young, I really had to grow up fast. Over night I was transformed into a young care free school girl with lots of friends and a great social life, to suddenly having to completely fend for myself. I had to pay bills, do the food shop, work, clean, budget so that meant not being able to go out and see my friends as much, make all my own food, wash and iron my own clothes and basically be an adult. Like I said no regrets, I learnt some very valuable lessons at a young age. But looking back I wish I would of been able to stay living at home and to just enjoy being young. There’s no rush in growing up, weather you like it or not it’s going to happen and your going to have a life full of responsibilities. Embrace being young, wild and care free 😀
  • The school years are the best years… I remember my brother telling me this and I would look at him as if he was crazy. When I was at school I couldn’t wait to leave, ironic isn’t it that now I would do anything to go back. Your school years really are some of the best years of your life. One major positive is that you get to see your friends every single day, I can assure you that won’t  happen when your an adult! Even though I don’t see most of the people I once went to school with, I still hold the memories I have with those people very close to me. I could of done a lot better in school than I did but I compensate that for some of the most hilarious, crazy, fun, couldn’t make it up if you tried memories I have. Enjoy it all, you will look back on your school years a lot as you grow up.
  • Put the phone down… Ok so I know this generation is phone crazy, I have a teenage sister who barley comes up from air from her phone. But I really do believe so much pressure comes from social media and likes for young girls and boys. Social media is an illusion, people only put out what they want others to see, you don’t get to see the whole picture basically. You don’t have to feel the pressure of having to look a certain way at all times or have certain materialistic things because you see it online. A phone connects you to others who are far away but takes you away from those who are right next to you, I tell my sister this all the time. Take a breather from the phone, be in the real world for a little bit. Everything will still be there when you look back at your phone in a little bit, just be with those people who are right next to you, spend time with them making memories because they won’t be there forever.
  • Greet the janitor with the same respect as the CEO… One of the best lessons I have learnt without a doubt. I learnt this lesson the hard way for myself. In the first job I ever had when I left school. I was treated like the lowest of the low, given all the crappy jobs nobody else wanted to do and though they could pass onto the new girl, I worked more hours and did more jobs than most of the people in that place. But what really got to me was the way some of those people spoke to me because they were higher than me. I made a promise while I was there that I would never make someone feel less than a person because of their job status. I don’t care if I’m talking to a homeless person or the boss of a huge company I will speak and show them the same level of respect. A persons status or bank account shouldn’t determine how you treat that person.
  • Don’t be afraid of change it’s the only way you can ever really grow.
  • Work hard, your going to need them GCSE’s at some point in your life even if not straight away. 
  • Family will be your greatest support throughout life be kind to them.
  • The career path you choose at 16 isn’t always what you end up doing later on in life and that’s ok. (It’s never to late to change career path)
  • Don’t miss out for a relationship. 
  • Be kind to yourself, you may feel old but your still young and mistakes happen. Remember never a failure always a lesson. 
  • Everything happens for a reason, and although at the time you can’t always see that reason, one day it will be reviled to you and it will all make sense. 
  • Your stronger than you think you are. 
  • Your more than a number on a scale. 
  • Follow your heart and your dreams but take your brain with you. 
  • Time passes anyway no matter how long something takes, may as well fill the tsionate about.