This is what slow mothering looks like

IMG_4311We’ve just arrived home after eight glorious days at the beach.  This beach is the most magical place. Regular readers of this blog will know my deep attachment to it. It’s a special spot on the mornington peninsula where life slows down; a place of rest and reflection.It draws me in the moment I arrive and smell the pine and salty air. I am my most relaxed self when I am there with my extended family. I feel so lucky that I get to return to the place that filled my childhood with so many happy experiences. And now I am creating new memories with my own children. A generation on, it remains my “happy place”.

I think the best part about a holiday is slow mothering. Having Mr NASD to share the load means that I can switch gears and shed some of the frenzy that usually accompanies solo parenting. Being on holiday also means relaxing the rules a bit – later bedtimes, meals thrown together at the last minute, a quick hose down instead of a bath, and generally less stress about routines. As someone who likes to be in control all the time, and a self-confessed routine enthusiast, I love how I relax when I am not moving or mothering to a schedule.

We all enjoyed a break from the commitments that, much as I try to resist, overcrowd our lives. Instead of kinder, ballet and music, the girls enjoyed quality time with nature: building and knocking down sandcastles, collecting sea shells, acorns and  pine cones (and insisting on bringing all of it back home) and seeing rabbits, kangaroo, owls and dolphins up close and personal. It doesn’t get much better than that!

I only wish I could feel this relaxed all the time. Being a little more impromptu about fun and not incessantly watching the clock.  It was very nice to dabble in a carefree space for a while.

Here is my week in pictures. This is what slow mothering looked like for me:

IMG_2317Lazy strolls along this magnificent stretch of sand. A few solo walks along the beach is the instant mood boost for me. The beach has a very calming affect on me.

IMG_4281Lots of fun on the beach and the most magnificent swim in the cool western port sea. Invigorating? Yes!

IMG_4271Miss H took some coaxing to get knee-deep in the “refreshing” water.

IMG_4209The fun and excitement of collecting shells  - a must for any beach holiday

IMG_41034 little cousins all in a row…

IMG_4140A Birthday celebration in the mix

IMG_2339Nothing says SUMMER more than a slippery slide. The nudie slides were definitely a highlight of the week!

IMG_2334Nothing beats an icy cold beer after a swim in the sea!

IMG_4317No, those are not shark fins! Three beautiful dolphins came out to play on our last day at the beach. They put on our playful performance for us and it was a magical end to the holiday.

Now, back to reality. What’s for dinner?

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12 thoughts on “This is what slow mothering looks like

  1. It looks lovely. It takes me back to my childhood holidays at Gerroa on the NSW south coast. Our family had a caravan and we used to spend our days riding bikes, fishing and yabbie hunting. I don’t think my mum knew where I was most of the time and each time we were there we made new friends which lasted the duration of the holiday. Thanks for reminding me that I need to book that beachside break for our little ones.

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  2. Thanks Erin. I think we had similar experiences – and a similar lack of supervision! Those were the days. Yes, book that beachside break and relive some of your childhood at the same time. It was purely magical. :-)

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  3. This post certainly rings true to me, Michaela. Not just in the metaphorical sense but literally, as my wind down holiday replicated yours right down to its location! There’s something about having that special place coursing through your bloodline – it makes up most of my childhood memory bank and I love that my kids are now making similar memories for themselves (although mine kids aren’t allowed to do half the stuff I did as a child down there!). We arrived home tonight – here’s to easing back into things while maintaining a little of the pace of our special place!

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  4. This post certainly rings true to me, Michaela. Not just in the metaphorical sense but literally, as my wind down holiday replicated yours right down to its location! There’s something about having that special place coursing through your bloodline – it makes up most of my childhood memory bank and I love that my kids are now making similar memories for themselves (although mine kids aren’t allowed to do half the stuff I did as a child down there!). We arrived home tonight – here’s to easing back into things while maintaining a little of the pace of our special place!

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    • Isn’t that amazing, Sophie! It makes up most of my childhood memory bank too. And you’re right about the lack of supervision we had when we were kids. My parents were too busy playing tennis or drinking G&T’s to take any notice of what we were up to. How things have changed. Yes, it’s all about preserving a little of the relaxed pace back here in our day-to-day lives. Glad you had a nice holiday and I hope to meet you down there sometime…

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