Saturday, 28 June 2014

Making the Most of Things

Sometimes life has a funny way of knocking you off course for a little while.  It can come in the form of a single, life stopping event, or in our case, it can sneak slowly up on you without you necessarily noticing. 

For the past 6 months or so, due to my husband’s work, we have had to compromise on lots of things.  Silly little things really, that alone can often go unnoticed, but once added together, and mounted up over time, they can become big things.

I have watched my beloved husband slowly buckle under increasing work pressure.  He could no longer regularly find time to read the girls’ their bedtime story, something which has always been part of the bedtime ritual.  He couldn’t sit and talk to me about how the day had gone, because there was work to be done.  The 5 day week slowly became a 6 day week.   Bedtime got later and later, and the alarm would get set a little earlier, so a few more minutes of work could be done. 

Surviving on less than 5 hours sleep a night did not a happy, healthy husband make, and eventually, it broke him.  It nearly broke me.  The final straw was when he crawled into bed at 3.30am one morning, with the alarm set to wake him barely 2 hours later.  I called time on it and forced his hand to take a break.  To take some time.  To rest a little.  To recuperate and regenerate, so he would actually still be with us in 6 months time!  A month with no work, no early mornings, no regimental routine, and, most important of all, no stress.

So what have we filled these past couple of weeks with?  Well, quite simply, living. 


Sleeping until gone 8am, and having a more carefree attitude to the girls’ normally strict bedtime.  Eating breakfast in our pyjamas.  Having dinner in front of the television, watching The Darling Buds of May.  Getting out and about.  Walking miles through the shadey forest.  Listening to the sound of the sea from the sun warmed shore.  Skimming stones and collecting pebbles.  Playing in the sand.  Dancing through the grasses at Dunwich, and having picnics in the summer sunshine.  Movie nights in, and trips out too.  Popcorn, ice-cream, BBQs, and spending time with supportive family and special friends.  All these things have helped put things back into perspective.

And while my Mr has been taking a break, I have too.  His working hours, and the pressure and worry associated with that, put me off my game more than a little.  I didn’t realise until everything suddenly stopped, just how much things had been getting to me.  I’ve put my needles down for now, and nothing has been knitted for over 2 weeks.  But I have found time to make some little things for the girls, who quite often get overlooked, from a making point of view.

A new dress for Miss M, made from Pirate fabric – so adorable – and a little felt horse for each of them, made from, unsurprisingly, a wartime pattern.

I haven’t left vintage hunting fall by the wayside.  I couldn’t, it’s one of the many things that make me happy, and so we have been out and about, collecting lots of beautiful frocks and accessories to bring to the fairs over the coming months. 


I may also have added a few vintage goodies to my own collection ;-)

4.5 yds 1940's crepe fabric, 1940's dress pattern and a new 1940's hat! :o)

We are halfway through our break, and have looked upon this unplanned month together as a gift.  It has given us an amazing, likely once in a lifetime, opportunity to take time out as a family, recharge our batteries a bit, and do the things so often taken for granted. 

I’m slowly, but surely, getting my husband back, claiming him once again as my own. Work has claimed far too much of him these past 6 months, and it gets you down.  We intend to very much make the most of the fact that for now, he’s ours, and only ours.

Normal service will resume shortly :o) xx


  1. ....................and I know exactly where you are coming from! I went through the same, then my husband retired and so did I. We spend time together and we do our own thing too. Hope things are getting better for you both.
    Julie xxxxxxxxxx

  2. A blessing on your family. You are a wise woman. Very wise, indeed.

  3. Ah yes ...that life/work balance. It can be very difficult balance sometimes - glad that things are back on track. Lovely little horses
    Best wishes

  4. The break sounds like it worked wonders for you all and the dress and horses are gorgeous! Well done on all counts!xxx

  5. A very nasty bang on the head has forced me to balance up that life/work ratio. I'm glad you've realised it before it was too late. Don't let him slip back into the same pattern! Hey I recognise some of those knitting patterns, you been trawling through my pattern boxes? Lol!

  6. I took a 2 month break last year & it was the best thing I ever did, I feel like me again! I hope your hubby feels the benefits too but don't let him slip back. Enjoy the remaining days :) xx

  7. I hope your break works out well for you and your family, and that you all get your bounce back. It's important to have some time to simply enjoy life.

  8. I hope you husband is feeling better, it can be very difficult to stop work taking over so I hope this time off has helped. Sounds like a very wise way to spend your time doing all those lovely things together. Great selection of patterns!

  9. I read this post and thought, omg, she's so lucky she saw it and put a stop to it! I'm so glad you caught hold of things before they really went bad, and that your hubby listened! You probably put a stop to something awful simply by common sense and having a husband who listened. I've enjoyed your blog a few years now. Thank you for all your wonderful posts.

  10. Your husband isn't in engineering by any chance? That work pattern is extremely familiar to me and I have several colleagues who'd say the same. That slippery slope starts with a "it has to be done but nobody has time to do it, so I'll just do it now and go home a little later...". It can be really hard to switch off - it takes almost a week of holiday to wind down from a stressful job, I believe - so I'm glad he's managed to take a whole month off and actually relax.

    - Pam

  11. Glad to hear you and your family are well huni. Sometimes it does you both good to switch off for a while xx

  12. A late comment from me, but full of admiration for you! for managing to drag him back from the brink, and for him for actually listening to you. I hope you've all recharged your batteries. I really love that pirate fabric dress, it's like something out of the famous five. xx

  13. I'm so sorry it's been such a stressful time for you and your family. It must have been horrible to see the person you love getting so worn out. Sounds like you've been having a great couple of weeks, such beautiful pictures! I love the dress you've made for your daughter and those knitting patterns are gorgeous! I hope you have a next great few weeks and your husband feels a lot better, work can really take it's toll sometimes. At the end of the day your family and creating memories with them is the most important thing. He is very lucky to have you. P.s. I adore The Darling Buds of May! XxxX