Embracing A Mild New Year

Imagine we did not run our world by a calendar year? The party, the countdown, once so much fun means little to me now. However, the milestones in the passing of time such as new year, become more important as a parent. Children love a day, an event, a tradition. I never expected that so much. I now mark everything. I decorate for Easter. Gigi has requested a pumpkin pie for next Halloween. We make gingerbread on Christmas eve. Children make these events that became tired in my twenties more shiny. More relevant.Picture_20181231_131358307.jpg

Today I know that I am one hundred percent happier than last NYE. Twelve months ago, I had a vertigo spell that ruined week two of Christmas and this year I can happily walk about without head spins.

Teachers have two new years. Term ending and a new one starting is a whole different type of new year. This school year started a new chapter in my school. Getting used to work without a colleague I always had as a friend was (and is) hard. We have stayed in touch however. My classes have been interesting groups with something new to deal with every day. This is why I teach.

Parenting is a constant game changer. This year Gigi started school. This was an emotional sand dune buggy trip for us all. Summer was spent worrying.

Oh boy, can I worry.

September was auto pilot.

October brought sickness and crisis points.

Days were long. Term was painful. Work became thief of my time with my children. Christmas holidays appeared like flashlight in a medieval cavern. We had made it.Picture_20181231_131606014.jpg

Teachers have the good holidays- this is true. This year I have never been more grateful.

Books are back in my life. Parenting makes us prioritise. Books make the shortlist and an easy prediction as finalist. I have spent time with friends and got to attend the All Ireland Drama festival which I love. There has been family meals, movies, walks, heatwaves, storms and snow. 2018 handed us everything yet today we have mild weather. Calm. Hopefully a sign for the coming year.

I hope Gigi is happy in the next half of her Junior Infants year. I hope Betsy continues to love her preschool and I am grateful that we are confirmed that she can attend next year. I hope the farm is successful. I hope I teach my students properly and they get something from my part in their education.

I hope for good health for both of our parents, mine and Mr Paper’s. I look forward to the books to come. More laughs and fielding the questions children ask.

Why doesn’t Sugar have puppies in her belly?

Why can’t you cut off all my curls and give me straight hair?

Why is the baby Jesus a boy?

And the one that nearly killed me.

Why have I no friends?Picture_20181231_131219043

I am constantly reminding myself that ‘friends’ at four years old means something else. One playtime alone does not mean even a week of playtimes in solitude. Her teacher tells me she plays with lots of people. She seems happy. This question, put to me in November, was proof I have a heart and that it can be broken. I would choose ten hours more of labour pain rather than have Gigi feel she needs ask it again.

2018 had challenges and it also gave us magic. We had holidays, trips, belly laughs and plenty of family time. We had the drama of early mornings, guilt trips, illness and the powerlessness moments of parenting. Nothing that we did not handle.

We were very lucky all year.

So happy New Year to you and yours- may 2019 be a year of happiness and joy in life. I may not drink champagne, wear silver and dance the night away. We may not toot party horns and hug strangers. We definitely will not make it to midnight. Parenting has made us mild in our lifestyle just like the weather outside. A Mild New Year- and the best one I could imagine.

I have selected a few posts from the year past if you so fancy a peek in to my past. Happy New Year to each and every one of you and see you in 2019.


A Possible Niche- Best Pal

An Awfully Big Aberdeen Adventure

Becoming Four

Irish Sun

Referendum on the 8th Amendment of the Irish Constitution (regulating termination of pregnancy) 2018, commonly called ‘The Abortion Referendum’

Breaking Up with your Childminder

Starting School and Social Media

Paper Bubble

A Wicklow Weekend

Downton Abbey with Children

A Peek into Peppa Pig World

Clutter, Cheer and a Slice of Cake


30 thoughts on “Embracing A Mild New Year

      1. So glad I checked back. What a beautiful post. Your daughter’s seeking a friend–oh my, my heart, too. And you’re so right; the kids make the holidays shinier! Enjoy them at these tender ages; for my 9-year-olds, Christmas mostly meant an X-Box 1. Not the kind of shiny memories are made of (for me anyway). All the best wishes for a wonderful 2019, and thank you for being such a *shiny* member of this blogging community!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Happy New Year!
    Love this post, brilliant writing as with all the rest of yours. Got my heart.
    I also didn’t make it to midnight. I’m not much for these kind of celebrations.
    Here’s to a calm 2019 full of happy moments!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your a great mother, Orla – your kids are lucky to have you. I love the magic they bring to our lives, and the richness they provide on a daily basis. A beautiful, real post, Orla! Loved it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We don’t make much fuss of things that we used to, either. But children do make a difference. I still remember the family traditions that made such an impression when I was young, and I wonder what memories we’ve laid down for our own children over the years.

    Happy New Year. Hopped over from Paul’s blog, and following.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you and nice to meet you! I am enjoying finding the pleasure in doing all these traditions again. It is funny how you can refind these things!
      Happy New year to you and yours.


  4. Happy New Year, Orla – enjoy your little ones, they grow so fast. The friends issues amongst a teen girl group is terrifying to navigate….and changes daily with social media. I have nominated you for the Versatile blogger award and shared one of your posts on my regular “Monday Magic” feature – find details for the award here: https://painpalsblog.com/2019/01/06/old-year-new-year-and-being-a-versatile-blogger/. It would be lovely if you join in, but don’t feel you have to – either is cool! Claire x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I witness that in school as a teacher but oh my god it is so different when it is your own x
      Thank you so much for the nomination and the link- you are a really generous blogger. I hope you are enjoying being in blog spotlight today in our group!
      I will definitely join in. I enjoy doing these posts🙂
      Thanks again! I will definitely repay you one day in the blogosphere

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh Orla what a sweet post! But “why don’t I have any friends?” I can totally see why that would break your heart! Hopefully now you explained it she realizes that she does have friends!!

    We don’t even have kids but I can see how they’d make holidays even more fun. Having my nieces and nephews around totally changed all holidays in our family too. You’re right…it makes everything sparkle.

    Anyway, happy new year. I am so chuffed to count you as a blogging friend and I hope 2019 will be perfect for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I would love to be a fly on the wall.at Gigi’s school- it is so hard to let go.
      Kids around at Christmas is very special. I loved it this year!
      Love having you as a blogging friend too😊 such a great support to other bloggers and with a lovely outlook

      Liked by 1 person

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