Since becoming a parent myself I’ve become a lot more aware of the role a parent has and the high, lows and challenges they face. I’ve also become aware of how much of a brat I was as a teenager.. I mean I wasn’t rebellious or out of control but to put it into perspective I became a vegetarian because I didn’t like what my mum was feeding me basically.
1. Be Yourself
My parents have been nothing but themselves all throughout my childhood. I probably told them they were embarrassing on many occasions, but they stuck to their guns. Both my parents still sing to every relative on their birthday down the phone, they practice their dancing whilst waiting for dinner to cook, my mum is obsessed with unicorns and my dad answers the door in just his underwear sometimes (most of the time).
I hope Pip and if any more follow accept that their parents are weird, but in an affectionate way. I wouldn’t be doing my job as a parent if she didn’t roll her eyes at me at least once.
2. It’s OK to tell a white lie.
I remember being really upset when my mum told me and my brother Santa wasn’t real (HE IS OF COURSE) and I decided to ask “What about the tooth fairy?” I sobbed my heart out when she told me the truth. The fantasy was crushed and so was I… back to boring reality. Some people may say you shouldn’t lie to your children, but I will be lying to my children until they are 40 if I can and tell them stories about Santa and the tooth fairy.
3. Explore the outdoors
We were extremely lucky as children to visit many places in the National Trust, cities and countries. My mum once told me that she wanted to take us to lots of new places on the weekends and explore new places rather than sat inside in front of the TV (we did that too sometimes!) and that we did. I have many fond memories of exploring new places and I hope I can do the same with my children.
4. Nothing is a secret in a family.
My family were sometimes over-sharers growing up and we would have internal distress when my parents showed any affection towards each other. However I never hid anything from parents (or I’d tell them at a later point… or most of the time they just knew). I told them when my friends were starting smoking (I rang them and cried because I didn’t want to do it), I told them when I tried drugs (my mum asked I didn’t run home and tell her.. It was a one time thing), I introduced them to boys (some boys anyway) and I told them about breakups and friendships. To others this may seem weird but my parents had told me about their teenage/adult years as I grew up so for us it was the norm.
I want my child to be able to come to me and tell me these things, not always necessarily wanting advice but just to keep me in the loop with no judgement.
5. Lots of hugs and cuddles!
This speaks for itself. Cuddles all day. Everyday.
6. If it goes wrong, just laugh about how crap it is
Before the word “banter” existed, we would often laugh at each others failures and mistakes. When myself and my brother were touchy teenagers this didn’t always have the best outcome but it was funny for everyone else.
I hope my daughter can know she laugh at me, as well as with me.
7. Homemade cakes are the best.
Nearly every birthday we had homemade birthday cakes. To me they were amazing and the effort was top notch. I had a clefairy (pokemon) cake, a fairy princess castle cake, a caterpillar, a ladybird, a giant cookie and a cake full of sweets.
I will too be making my little girl cakes, and that’s all I’ll be making.
8. Take lots of photos
We have tons and ton of photo albums of a childhood. With the invention of facebook, our teenage years and adult years are not nearly as documented anymore physically. I used to love looking through photo albums of me and I hope to recreate this for my own children.
9. Food is life
We always laugh about having excess weight in my family is a family trait as all of have been overweight at one point of another, even the dog! We love food, cooking of food and the celebration of it and even my brother is starting to learn to cook now he no longer has my mum cooking for him… crazy times.
I hope I can teach my own daughter to cook like my mum taught me how to bake.
10. Singing the right lyrics to a song is copyright
My mum would often sing a song, with half the words changed or a completely different melody. When challenged, she would often say singing the right lyrics to a song if copyright.
I have inherited the trait and if I’m singing a song, the words will be all wrong… but you know what.. copyright! I hope my daughter will find this charming and join in too.
I’m very lucky to have parents who inspire me to a great parent myself.
I’m also on Instagram and post pictures of my life/food daily – check me out and follow me @mummywhoo
I tweet too and you can follow my daily rages on twitter – follow me on @mummywhoo