Enjoying a lighter start to my year

Last year I spent nearly every evening working, I would put the kids to bed, get the laptop out at around 8.30pm and then continue to work until gone midnight – often 1am.  Then the children would wake during the night and get up around 6am if not earlier.  It took its toll as you would expect – I got ill repeatedly.  Lack of sleep has that effect on your body and something had to give.
I then took a break over Christmas, stepped back and didn’t pick up the laptop for a week.  It was a rare occurrence for me but it was needed for me and for my family.  I was getting cranky, stressed and becoming that shouty Mum I never wanted to be.  Since then I have stepped back a little, if I am tired in the evening I won’t get the laptop out, I may answer my emails but then I will watch a film on the sofa, grab a nice hot bath or even have an early night.
My work load is still there, I am behind on posts and my to do list is rather long BUT I have taken to saying NO a lot more or asking a PR to contact me again in a month or two.  It is liberating and I am feeling better for it and I am spending more quality time with the children, having fun with them and am shouting a lot less.
Now spring is officially here it is time to start getting outside more, grabbing and enjoying the sunshine while it is here and embracing the lighter evenings now it’s no longer pitch black at 4pm.  We have started to do this already and have popped to the park en-route home from school a few times, now it may still be on the chilly side but the kids have far too much energy and it does us all good to unwind and run around.
The start of the year is generally  perceived to be a negative time of the year, with many making new years resolutions and then breaking them by the end of February, it is for this reason I have stopped making them as I also break them!  Did you make a new years resolution?  Have you broken it yet?
To help stop the negative feelings and to help Londoners lighten the start of their year, Stacey Soloman teamed up with Mini Babybel light to bring joy to commuters en-route to work to help start their day with a smile.  She joyed these commuters in a Pogo bounce to work – how could you not start your day with a smile if you are handed a Pogo stick and allowed to lay around?  It has to bring out the inner child in most people.
I have to admit that looks so much fun and I really want to have a go myself as it would certainly make sure the day started with a smile and a laugh (or knowing how accident prone I am perhaps a broken ankle)
The above research was taken out on behalf of Mini Babybel Light to find out what holds the key to UK happiness in early 2016.  I’m from the South East and that bodes true for me in that I haven’t make a resolution at all although I am working a little less and recognising when I am too tired and need a break.
Another change I have implemented is getting Harry’s packed lunch ready the night before he has Pre-School and putting in the fridge, it may only take a few minutes a day to make but mornings are such a rush for us that anytime saved is crucial.
He has become bored or sandwiches, which isn’t really helped by him not liking many fillings so I try to vary his lunch as much as I can.
Some of the variations I have found he likes most are:
  • Cold cooked pasta (saved from dinner the previous day) with added cheese cubes and halved baby tomatoes 
  • Cheese and Crackers
  • Potato salad – made using left over potatoes from the previous days dinner
  • Bagel with Cream cream & Ham
  • Salad – Baby tomatoes, beetroot, chopped ham and cheese
  • Bread sticks with houmous 
I like to give him something different each day so he doesn’t get bored and I deliberately got him a lunchbox with separate sections to it so he can have a his his sweet and savory snacks separated.  As well as one of the above I give him a selection of the following so he can pick and choose what he wants – he doesn’t always eat it all as they don’t have a lot of time for lunch but at least I know he won’t be hungry when I pick him up (or at least that is my plan)
  • Grapes
  • Raspberries
  • Watermelon 
  • Strawberries
  • Mini Babybel Light (with only 42 calories per cheese it is my little lunchtime snack of choice therefore the children have this too)
  • Yogurt
  • Biscuit
  • Squeezy fruit sachet
  • a little bit of chocolate
  • Mini sausages
  • Ham
  • Sliced chicken

If Harry had his own way he would have Sushi for lunch every single day but I refuse to put this into his lunchbox as they are left sitting on the side all morning unrefrigerated, and I have to draw the line somewhere!
When he starts his new Nursery he will continue to have packed lunches so I need to look into new options so he doesn’t get bored.  What do your children like for lunch? Can you suggest some different options for lunchboxes?
“This is a collaborative post” 

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