A lifestyle blog from a forty-something mum

Friday, 25 March 2016

Home for Easter

Empty nest, parenting, EasterDaughter Olivia is on her way home as I write this post. Sophia is already here after we collected her from uni last weekend. Last Sunday was a very long day and this meant that we have been tired for most of the week. Not that we shared that with our daughter obviously. To our kids, we'll always be mum & dad and therefore capable of anything.

I anticipate chaos during the week ahead as we adapt to living together as a family of four all over again. Sophia will work on final pieces for her degree show in May; Olivia, on her dissertation. There will be mess and mayhem, laughter and tantrums as I try (and fail) to keep everything afloat.

I read a fabulous post from Suzanne over at Chickenruby earlier in the week. What Happens After Your Kids Leave Home? summed up rather beautifully what it's like to live without your children once they're all grown. It resonated well with thoughts about my own daughters.

It's taken a while to settle down, but since my daughters left home and went to university we've got used to sharing our home with a cat who thinks she's in charge. I juggle 2 part-time jobs. Keep the house going. Find time to read. Enjoy long soaks in the bath. Go out for leisurely breakfasts with my husband. Attend local music nights. Spend time with friends. And secretly enjoy my own company more than I ever thought possible.

Having to factor in the needs of four all over again comes as a shock. I sometimes wonder if I'm becoming selfish in my old age - but it's rather lovely to be able to do all those things I haven't had time for since becoming a mum. I love my daughters more than anything, but accept that they need to live their lives and enjoy their own space. When they left for university in 2013 I couldn't imagine life without them, but now, I love that my daughters are capable of being independent - it kind of validates your role as a parent doesn't it?

For now, I'm mum all over again. Cakes are baked, the freezer filled, cupboards stocked and Easter Eggs hidden. I anticipate the car never being on the drive, the house unravelling and not being able to find what ever I'm looking for. The laundry basket will overflow, plans change at the last minute and I'll be up to date with the latest chart music.

When they leave, I will miss their company and the laughter that fills the house when they are here. 

As both daughters finish university in June, I have to get used to sharing the house all over again. Sophia's off to the US for 3 months and plans on completing a TEFL course and heading off again after that. Olivia's home for the summer at least. Who knows what will happen next? She returns to uni early for work experience at a newspaper and is busy applying for jobs.

Whatever happens I'm exceptionally proud of my girls and all that they have achieved. But just like Mummy Pig in The Three Little Pigs, I know that it's time for my daughters to make their way in the world and believe that this is the ultimate goal any parent could possibly hope for.

Copyright ©2016 Izzie Anderton


  1. I hope you all have a wonderful Easter together...
    I can't imagine a time when my girls have left home...I don't even want to think about it. hehehe

  2. What a lovely post. It must be strange adjusting to them being home, then adjusting again when they go away. You must be so proud of everything they've achieved at uni and what independent young women they've become. Hope you all have a lovely Easter. X

  3. My mum loves as coming to stay but I know she likes the peace and quiet once we have left!

  4. This is a little insight to my future and I love to read how honest you are. I hope you all have fun together over Easter. Mich x

  5. It is hard when they leave isn't it. I don't miss the extra washing, the empty cupboards and the wet towels on the floor but I do miss them

  6. I can not imagine my boys leaving as yet, but then they are only 10 and 11. Somedays I craze some peace, but I know I will miss them!

  7. I hope you all have a lovely Easter together. Have fun!

  8. Its lovely to read that you are enjoying your independence and at the same time having the family time that we all crave. Sounds like both your daughters are doing well and will flea the nest soon.

  9. Ah Izzie, how far you've come since those early days. Your life sounds like bliss but I bet you'll love mixing it up a bit with them home xxx

  10. What a lovely post, I'm at uni myself and see the other side and as my eldest is about to enter into his last year at school, it tugs at my heart knowing that this could be him in just a few years. Hope you had a fab Easter


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