March was a hectic month, but there are quite a few things we loved this past month.
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We had been neglecting our alone time for the past few (several) months. We were seriously overdue a date night, and my Mom flew into the rescue by whisking our boy off to her house for the night. It happily coincided with the eldest being out too, so we got some indulgent food in (steak), a bottle of our favourite Yellow Tail Jammy Red Roo and settled in for an evening of catching.
If you need a reminder to schedule in some alone time with your significant other, here it is! Being connected to each other is a vital part of marriage and one we allow busy-ness to distract us from doing.
After we ate, we watched “Those who wish me dead”, with Angelina Jolie. It was a thriller film which was quite good to be fair. Nothing too strenuous to watch with a belly full of good food!
One of the things we talked about during our date night was the need to prioritise time praying together! We can happily continue on our own merry little ways, without connecting spiritually with each other. One of the things we talked about was praying together. For some couples this is easy, for others (like us) the busy-ness of life can take over. By the end of the day neither of us wanted to be touched or spoken to, let alone hold hands and pray together. Being in our new church community, having a focus word has helped somewhat. The word for our church this year is breakthrough, and that has helped give us something to pray about together and search the word together.
One other thing we took up in earnest this past month was beginning a family devotional called All Together by Steve and Bekah Legg. It has been a great talking point for C to ask all the questions that burn in his little brain. We highly recommend for anyone looking to ease into a daily devotional for the whole family.
One thing we have loved doing together this past month is cook together. We roped C into helping cook with us in the kitchen. He got his step out so he could be included in the evening meal ritual. when it comes to our evening meals we are definitely planners, and happily throw together a weekly plan for what we are having. The kids are always involved, they get at least 2 suggestions each week, and that means Phil and I only have to actually think of 3 for the rest of the week.
However, we usually autopilot the actual cooking of the meals. This month we changed it up and got the youngest involved. The eldest is usually pretty good at rolling her sleeves up to do dinner, but C needed a little encouragement. So far he has made creamy bacon pasta, crispy chicken wraps and naan bread pizzas. If you haven’t made naan bread pizzas, I highly recommend it, as it is tasty, cheap and an ideal “cant be bothered to cook” meal!
It has also been wonderful to have Phil home a little more often during the week. He had a few half days dotted throughout March, so it was a real treat for both me and C. He got to see how C was doing with his home ed first hand, and of course it was also very nice for me to have my hubby home in daylight hours too.
Our Home Education
We tried a new group this month, about half an hour from home. It is a lovely little village group, although mostly girls at the moment, we are hoping for some more boys to arrive soon. It has only been going a year, so still in its infancy. The nice thing about it the friendliness of the other Moms there. I was invited straight into the conversation with them, and well the kids do what all home ed kids do – gather together and crack on!
We also did a three week art course with Heidi from Arts in Action, in Coventry. I hadn’t really done anything like that with C before, and I wasn’t sure how he would get on. As it turned out, with a lot of encouragement, he loved it! Heidi is wonderful, and has such a joy about her. She walked the small group through printing off gel pads, creating an image template and then cutting shapes for a collage. C was wobbly at first but soon got the hang of it. By the end of the three weeks had learned a heap of new art skills, and was eager to have another go when we got home. Check Heidi out for yourself if you are local to Coventry as she runs several classes and is great with SEND kiddos.
Brixham was our road trip for this month. Having Phils parents down there means we get a trip to the edge every few months. When staying away from home we tend to stay at the Premier Inn, it helps staying in these hotels with our autistic son because they are always pretty much the same. We even managed a rather wind swept walk along the sands, albeit a very short walk as it was bitter.
We love the front at Paignton with the pier, the uninterrupted views of the open waters and the delicious smells of fresh doughnuts.
Living in the Cotswolds we are surrounded by beautiful National Trust properties and parks. We are almost spoilt for choice really. One of our favourites to visit is Charlecote Park, with its stunning manor and deer park. We loved being able to walk around West Park on our visit, as all the deer were so close by. Seeing the young deer learning to rut was a delight, as was all the snow white, albino deer. It made the walk around that much more interesting as we checked out the hedgerows for birds, and found deer prints in the mud. If you are near to Warwick, we highly recommend a day at Charlecote. The second hand book shop is a treat too. We always plan in a sneaky mooch through the shelves of books whenever we go there.
I have been focusing heavily on decluttering! The change from winter to spring in March had me itching to have a good throw out! Where does it all come from?? Regardless I reorganised the kitchen throughout March. No small project as we have limited cupboard space and an awkward under stairs storage pantry. Why do we end up with so much? I have no idea at all.
Anyway we live in a new build, that is still in its first year, so decorating has to wait. That leaves decluttering. Have you had a good declutter this spring? We took so much to our local tip shop, they were beaming every time we pulled up to see what we had in the boot. I don’t know who was happier, them for getting some good donations or me for freeing up some much needed space in our home.
During March I really focused in on the small stuff. The food we were eating, what media we were consuming and of course coming back to my beloved (albeit neglected) blog. I had lost so much time to doom scrolling social media. I had deleted TikTok, but reals and shorts were sapping all my time and energy. It is wild how you think you’ve only been scrolling for 5 minutes, only to realise 2 hours had passed. I decided Lent was as good a time as any to detox from social media, spend more time with my boy, reading and of course returning to my passion for writing.
I really had forgotten how much I love tapping at the keys of my keyboard, whilst the gentle whirr of the fan on my laptop fills the quiet space around me. As I sit here, Phil has just gotten out the shower, and C is putting a 1,000 piece puzzle together. It is a forgotten happy place that I am very glad to have rediscovered.
As for reading I have been loving The Wild + Free Family by Ainsley Arment and Rhythms of Renewal by Rebekah Lyons. C has been fully engrossed in Black Beauty by Anna Sewell and When I see Blue by Lily Bailey. Phil has been reading through the Bible and a book I got him for Christmas called God of All Things: Rediscovering the sacred in an everyday world by Andrew Wilson. It is on my list to read next.
Even though our youngest loves a good creamy bacon pasta, one of our favourite recipes this month has been a homemade sweet and sour chicken recipe. Phil is allergic to MSG so getting a Chinese takeaway isn’t really an option for us. So I have to get creative if we want anything oriental. Thank goodness for Pinterest is all I can say. Needless to say this recipe has been so loved by my lot, that it has been printed and added to our “recipes we love” binder. You can find it over at The Hidden Veggies site. I highly recommend using it with pineapple juice for that authentic takeaway tang!
With the change of seasons we have seen our fair share of tummy bugs and colds this year. March, with the rain and grey skies has been no exception! Things I have reached for this month have included Lavender and Peppermint oils to help with respiration. As well as Digest Aid from Revive essential oils. They are a non MLM company, and I highly recommend them. Digest Aid has been a life saver for upset tums, especially mine. I use this applied with a carrier oil to my tummy. Lavender and Peppermint have been a much needed lift in the diffusers, and really help to elevate the air quality when it is too cold and wet to have the windows open.
We have also been trying to ensure we vary our foods this month. Although I love a good bit of winter stodge, my guts do not! Changing the variety of foods we take in massively helps support our digestion and in turn our immune system. Also getting in enough fluid. I don’t know about you but I always find it so much harder to hydrate in winter than summer. It has been a struggle. I grabbed some electrolyte soluble tablets from the supermarket though, and that has been helping a lot.
Our plans for April are pretty simple. Stay as healthy as possible, travel to see some friends and carry on decluttering our home. Fairly similar to March to be honest, although with more hope of warmer, sunnier days in the mix.
How was your March? Let me know in the comments, and share any recipes, books and places you have loved too.