Humor Life Writing

Self-Care & Cupcakes

9th July 2018

Funny story, I downloaded a meditation app.  It’s called Calm.  And I actually used it.  To meditate, find relaxation, hide, whatever.  This happened, a grand total of once.  So far.

But let’s back up.

My kid turned four.  And I met Katie from Fatty McCupcakes.  On the same day.  It was a groovy day.

A day that included 20 cupcakes, 14 penguins, and a unicorn.  Or so we thought.

The night before Isla’s birthday, Neil and I were wrapping Isla’s many, many plastic presents.  I was drinking beer and kept giving Neil the finger.  To make bows on the presents.  Of course.

We were reminiscing about that night four years ago.  That night I saw the hospital counsellor and then fell asleep during Meet the Fockers.  And then Neil watched Lord of The Rings.  We’re movie people.

Isla had a new number balloon, weighted down this year.  We put the unicorn at the end of her bed, so she’d see it first thing of the big 4.

The stage was set.  Or something.

The next morning, I did feel older and I swore Isla looked older.  And then I just swore.

‘You guys,’ said Isla.  I love this.  But it’s not a unicorn.’

‘How?’ we said.

‘There’s no horn.’


‘It’s a horse with wings.  A winged horse,’ said Isla.

‘Pegasus!’ Neil shouted.


As she opened everything else she exclaimed ‘What?  Wow!’ for everything, and then took cupcakes to school.


I dressed in actual jeans and a bright orange top.  Recently jeans have become what I wear when I’m um, making an effort.  Whatever that is.

Neil took a half-day at work and Isla was late for her own party.

Everyone was overwhelmingly generous.  I’ve never seen so much glitter at a dinosaur party.

Two hours later everyone trailed out with a walking balloon bobbing behind them.

Balloons from Skye Walking Balloons.

Isla was happy and I was tired and happy.

At home, we unveiled Isla’s new paddling pool.  The last bit of plastic, I  promise.

By the time Katie and her Mom arrived, my kid was in a bathing suit.  And my husband, well.

‘Hi, it’s so good to meet you,’ I said.  ‘That’s Isla, and that’s Neil.  I did not sanction his man-sandals. Welcome to the family.  What are we drinking?’

Gotta say, it was like Katie and I had known each other for years.  And I guess we have.  But it was nice to talk without computer screens between us.  I wanted to adopt her and her Mom.  Or I want them to adopt me.

I kept saying ‘I bought cupcakes.  Have one.’  But we were too busy laughing and eating pizza.

It was a truly beautiful day.

And the next day, I was frazzled, and fizzled.  I wanted to write, but couldn’t reach the computer in the kitchen.  Too much birthday debris.  We had cold pizza for lunch, which made me nostalgic.

I wrote on real paper.

I wanted more time to myself.

Life was a bit loud.  And the musical interlude was SpongeBob.

After dinner, I downloaded Calm.  For real.  I don’t know where I found it, and we know how I feel about self-care.

But, honestly.  I’ve been feeling like the days are getting away from me, like I could do more.  Be more.  Focus more.

Not feel so bad that there’s only like three places to take Isla, and she’s bored, too.

Maybe if I tried to meditate, I’d unlock the bit of myself that doesn’t feel like enough.  The bored bit, the unfocused bit.   Maybe I’d learn not to give a shit.  Or care less.

So, I had big plans.  I was going to meditate for 30 days.  Find myself.  Eat, Write, Love, without the sneaky God bits.

I tried one session, did the whole bit.  Breathing, loosening. Falling asleep.

I woke up and set a reminder.  And then ignored it.  I haven’t meditated or fallen asleep since that first time.

But I did write a thing.  About not writing.

I carved out a space for myself in the home-office.

I sent Isla and Neil to the park.  I stared at my screen.  They came home and Neil asked if I’ve written anything.  If I’ve finished my book and earned a million bucks, so he can quit his job and we can travel the world.  So we don’t have to worry about dropping stupid money on accessible hotel rooms.

Don’t ask.

Like for instance, I’ve wanted to write this post for ages.  This catch-up post that probably has too much angst in it for modern blogging.  Again.  Hi.

I tell myself I’ll write at night.  I’ll NaNo at night.  But I don’t.  Because night-time is the time I focus on being unfocused.  Night-time is the time my kid asks me to read in my regular voice.  Because my silly voice is too silly these days.  Did I mention she’s four?

I promise tomorrow will be better.






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  • Reply johnrieber 9th July 2018 at 1:55 pm

    Terrific post on so many levels – I opened my eyes this morning and discovered that it’s July…wait, didn’t we just celebrate New Years Eve? I try to post a new story every single morning, no matter what. Why? Because there are days I have nothing to share, nothing of interest to say, but there has to be SOMETHING out there of interest to others if not me, so I do. Again, a great post, extremely well-written as always!

  • Reply Ritu 9th July 2018 at 1:55 pm

    Glad Isla had such a great birthday, including Peggy! And so glad you could meet Katie! I was hoping to last weekend, while she was in Kent, but had to rush to see my Pops in Birmingham instead as he was really unwell, so i missed her…
    Your writing space is great… mine is wherever I find a spot lol! Currently at my Pop’s hospital bedside!

  • Reply Nicole 9th July 2018 at 1:58 pm

    It’s possible you picked up Calm from me — I ramble about it a lot. I’ve had it for ages, and even completed a few of the weekly meditation tracks and knocked out a few “meditate daily” monthly goals. But I have yet to make it a daily habit, though I desperately need to. So does my kid, but she sees meditation as kind of a punishment, so now I’m trying a different tactic: I put a door between us when I meditate. Most days (I have still yet to manage *every* day), I take one of their kiddie chairs out to the back deck, shut the door, and meditate for 5 minutes. (If it’s raining, I go to the porch. Because my deck is not covered, and I can’t get my zen on if I’m dripping wet. I’m weird that way.) Either way, I have a space to myself, where my daughter can’t bug me and my son can’t try to sit on my head (true story)…but they can see me. Which makes them feel left out. And my daughter’s slowly coming around: She occasionally asks to meditate now.

    Jealousy is proving to be my most powerful kid motivation tool.

    What has been easier to incorporate into our daily lives are the sleep stories. We listen to one every night. Anya’s favorite is the Moshi story. Kai prefers Cinderella. I love anything read by Stephen Lyons, though I’m partial to the sheep one.

  • Reply rachaelstray 9th July 2018 at 2:20 pm

    Glad Isla had a great birthday. Let us know how you get on with with the calm app.

  • Reply Em Linthorpe 9th July 2018 at 2:34 pm

    Lovely catch up post.

    I’m the same on an evening, I should use the 3-y-o free time to write, to plan, to whatever. Time for my blog. But by that time of day, I mainly want it to be just me, or occasionally me plus the man and a TV show.

    I’m pretty sure we are rocking it regardless 😉 xx

  • Reply cookandenjoyrecipes 9th July 2018 at 2:36 pm

    Love it, being Mom to a 4 year old, feels like so many moons ago, and both our kids have their own kids, only one of the 4 grand kids still still under 4. Know the feeling, but treasure every moment. Before you know you’re a grandma and 4 little ones, You may think I am nuts, but I still long for those days when our own were that age and all I could manage to do was care for them and then have no time to do anything else. 🙂

  • Reply Image Earth Travel 9th July 2018 at 2:45 pm

    She’s a gorgeous girl!

  • Reply Reflections of an Untidy Mind 9th July 2018 at 3:07 pm

    That desk is very tidy. I’m super impressed.

  • Reply Rebecca Moon Ruark 9th July 2018 at 3:15 pm

    I like the angst! And happy birthday to your little one! Wonderful post.

  • Reply Losing the Plot 9th July 2018 at 3:37 pm

    Yay. Happy Birthday Isla, loving Peggy.

    I am so jealous of the workspace, I resort to my bedroom to write, but I usually have to kick out one of the boys first, since that’s their preferred spot for gaming. ?

  • Reply shelleywilson72 9th July 2018 at 4:09 pm

    LOVE the penguins!!! Glad Isla had a fabulous birthday and that you got to meet Katie – it’s so much fun doing the whole blogger-face-to-face thing 😉 I meditate every morning but it took me a l o n g time to get into this routine. I’ve noticed a massive difference in my focus and mind set but I also know that a meditation app doesn’t suit everyone. Spending five minutes in your garden just listening to the ‘real life’ noises around you can work wonders. Great post x

  • Reply fancypaperblog 9th July 2018 at 5:47 pm

    Peggy sounds the best. I reckon people across Europe are giving Katie cupcakes- it is her thing!! ?

  • Reply gemmaorton 9th July 2018 at 6:48 pm

    Love the writing space! And the writing. More great words. I admire your honesty. That ‘not enough’ feeling, I’m with you there. Also, where does the time go?
    Happy Birthdsy Isla!

    • Reply Lorna 9th July 2018 at 8:42 pm

      We are enough. <3

  • Reply Alice 9th July 2018 at 8:12 pm

    (It won’t let me connect my WordPress or Twitter account for some reason). Keep us posted on the Calm app. I tried it too. Once. x

    • Reply Lorna 9th July 2018 at 8:41 pm

      Might be a blog series or something.

  • Reply fattymccupcakes 9th July 2018 at 8:57 pm

    Gosh, I just love you so much, lady! Meeting you (and your gorgeous family) was my absolute favorite part of visiting Skye! ????

    • Reply Lorna 11th July 2018 at 9:44 am

      Reno, 2019, kiddo.

  • Reply You Can Always Start Now 9th July 2018 at 9:22 pm

    I think you pack a lot into life. Give yourself a pat on the back. Birthday party sounded fab. Jealous u met fellow blogger

  • Reply Nicole Bondurant 10th July 2018 at 3:20 pm

    I have gone to one meditation session at the library. Felt better afterwards but I’m having trouble with going back. Maybe I will try an app. Thanks 4 info.

  • Reply Miriam Joy 10th July 2018 at 10:57 pm

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but I’m prone to dropping a ton of angst in my blog posts, and it actually kind of makes me feel better when other people do the same, so that I don’t feel alone in sometimes having to focus on the bad stuff. (And this didn’t feel unduly angsty, I promise.)

  • Reply Lauren Becker 11th July 2018 at 3:18 am

    Aw, those walking penguins are adorable. I’m with you on needing to find the time/space/motivation for writing. I really do want to work on my novel again – it’s been way too long. I just fill up too much of that time and energy on the blog and all that goes with it, which I love, but you know…I don’t think I’ll ever be a full time blogger (or want to be) but a full time published author? that would be the dream. Sigh. I’ll figure it out. hah


    • Reply Lorna 12th July 2018 at 10:11 am

      I have all the motivation, my issue is this ‘close your door’ thing people keep mentioning. I have no door. If you work on your book, I’ll work on mine.

  • Reply Stephanie 12th July 2018 at 5:27 pm

    This is exactly what my self care looks like- I take it when I can get it, and I use whatever method I can at the time. It’s nevwr consistent, and that’s okay!

  • Reply Tonya Murdock 12th July 2018 at 5:47 pm

    I have been in this boat so many times!! Maybe that’s why they say Christmas in July….because all the effects and chaos of December present themselves here first! Just my thoughts!

    • Reply Lorna 12th July 2018 at 6:06 pm

      Do you have a summer kid, too?

  • Reply Jen 12th July 2018 at 6:15 pm

    Life passes quickly, doesn’t it? Glad you were able to have a fun time, sounds like she had a blast, and that’s what matters. Good job Momma! I need to work on some calm amidst the chaos in my life…

  • Reply melody d phariss 12th July 2018 at 9:06 pm

    I love it! My life seems just as exciting as yours and with kids there never seems to be a dull moment. I have tried meditation but it makes me too relaxed and I feel like I just need to sleep the rest of the day away. Love the humor and that you make your family apart of your blog

  • Reply Laura 12th July 2018 at 10:34 pm

    Love, love, love this post! So hard to find the time and space to write. Happy bday to your daughter. Beautiful.

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