What Makes Me Smile?

I remember a conversation with a mother of one of Winter Girl’s school friends. She has the same lumbar disc problem as me, and in addition to that she has MS and some other painful conditions. She permanently uses crutches and is constantly in pain. We shared our experiences and I asked her how she copes with her pain and 3 children. She said to me ‘I make sure I put on a smile every day’. And she does. She is always smiling. Although you can tell that behind that smile, behind those sparkly eyes, there lies pain on a constant no-let-up scale.


  • Time in the car with no-one around, volume up high – Frank Turner, Foofighters, Queens of the Stone Age, The Levellers, More Frank Turner. And recently Amelda May can be added the list!
  • With the children in the car, got to be sung loudly – Four Simple Words, Beautiful Day, I Still Believe, Reasons Not to be an Idiot. So many more though, promise not all Frank!
  • Jack Johnson – Better Together, best listened to with R, our ‘song’ if we have one. All of that album
  • Bruce Springsteen! Gotta Love Bruce! He always makes me smile!
  • Concerts, festivals. Ok, so they are not a big thing right now, but soon. I love live music.

My Children

  • in the mornings, cuddles in bed. This morning Summer Girl came up and Winter Boy was already in the middle of us fast asleep. And stayed asleep until 8am!
  • In the evenings, cuddles with bedtimes stories
  • After a bath, all wrapped in soft towels, they look gentle and beautiful and always love to cuddle into me as I dry them
  • Their incesent giggles, especially now they laugh together, them calling me ‘mother’ so I grab them and tickle them until they beg me to stop, laughing so hard they can’t breathe
  • Listening to Summer Girl read – she is so clever, loves books, reads everything and anything.
  • Watching Winter Boy play with his toys, he is expressing himself so well, loves imaginative play, wonderful to see
  • Bedtime cuddles – hearing Bella’s sleeping recounting of her day, asking me wonderful questions ‘why do we have skin? Imagine if we were all specks on dust? wouldn’t that be cool? imagine we were all cats!’ Roo asking me to tell him about his day as a story ‘there was a boy called Roo’ and he laughs as if it really is a different boy doing the same things as him.

A Tidy House!

  • With insence burning, fairy lights, on, maybe some candles (when the kids are in bed)
  • Getting into a beautifully made bed, with crisp clean sheets straight from the washing line, and laying there enjoying the beautifully tidy room I am in.
  • Being able to do some of the cleaning myself makes me quite happy actually!
  • Not having clothes/toys/towels/any other bit of junk on the floor. I love a clear, hoovered/cleaned floor. Even if the rest of the house is a mess, the surfaces and such, I can cope better if the floors are clear.

The Beach/The Sea/Water.

  • I love water. Walking on the beach whatever the weather makes me smile.
  • Sitting on a rock on my own, gazing at the sun setting and the waves gently lapping
  • Eating veggie sausages sarnies on the deserted cove at Bovisand at 9am with the children, then drawing their name in hearts as big as we can for planes and helicopters that might fly overhead to see.
  • A good bath. With bubbles. Along with a glass of cold sauvignon blanc, or large glass of pinot noir, music. Bliss.

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