friendships old and new

I’ve just returned from a fantastic couple of days in London, meeting my ‘What I’m Writing’ blogging friends for the first time. It was only my second night away from home (without my kids) since the birth of my youngest, two-and-a-half years ago, and I think I’m getting a taste for it. Not that I don’t love being around my boys most of the time but it is fantastic to be ‘footloose and fancy-free’ for a weekend!

view of the shard

The view from my hotel window – much more impressive than I’d expected!

And what a weekend! I set off with my younger boys (six and two) after school on Friday, leaving the eldest (eight) with my husband for some father/son bonding time (good plan – they both loved it), and headed down to Yorkshire to stay with my parents for the night. First thing the next morning I left the boys with my parents and hopped on the train down south.

As I watched the beautiful Yorkshire landscape whizz past the window it occurred to me that there was nothing I needed to do that moment – no demands on my time, no small people to entertain, no deadlines to meet (or not ones that couldn’t wait) so I… *drumroll* read a magazine! A really crappy one! I learned all about Botox (it may smooth out your skin but often causes muscle wastage that hollows out your appearance thus making you look older in the long run… oh, and recent research suggests that overuse when young affects you psychologically since mirroring other people’s facial expressions helps develop empathy… interesting eh?) and also about who’s dating who, celebrity diets and whose body I’m supposed to wish was my own. Hmmm.

Anyway, before my brain was even half filled with fluff (it was a three hour trip but my head has a large fluff-capacity) my train arrived in Kings Cross and I was off to meet my gang.

What I'm Writing lunch

L-R Reneé from Mummy Tries, me, Rachael from Honest Speaks, Rebecca Ann Smith, Nikki Young Writes, Emily Organ and Sophie is…

It was SO fantastic to meet them all. It felt a weird mixture of completely surreal and utterly normal. These were people whose faces I’d only seen in FB profile pics, whose voices I’d never heard and whose lives I only knew about through words on a screen… and yet they were also people who I’d chatted with online and read and shared so much with through our blogs that I felt I knew them well. Conversation, laughter and wine flowed freely over a delicious four hour lunch and over cocktails afterwards. We talked about real stuff – who could be bothered with small talk? The only downside was that we didn’t have longer – so we’re already planning a next time!

Having had a wonderful Saturday, the next morning I rounded off my London experience with a leisurely brunch with my oldest friend. We first met before we were born (well ok, our mums met in antenatal class) and we’ve been best friends ever since, but seeing her was an all-too-infrequent treat. With my new-found freedom though I’m hoping to change that.

On getting back to my parents’ house later that afternoon I was met by two delighted boys who’d had a fantastic weekend with their grandparents. My six-year-old then gave me this story which he’d written (and illustrated) for me on post-it notes. I didn’t think he’d paid attention when I’d told him where I was going but clearly some of it had sunk in, well, the location anyway:

trip to London story

It’s rather prosaic for him (his stories usually involve castles, trolls or flying pigs) but I rather liked its blunt, straight-forwardness. He’s wrong about one thing though – this isn’t the end. It’s just the start of the story.

Writing Bubble
Little Hearts, Big Love

22 thoughts on “friendships old and new

  1. Mummy Tries

    Fabulous post Maddy, I’m so pleased that you made the very most of your weekend. Love the post it note story, and your knowledge that this is just the beginning. Woo hoo xxx

  2. Nicola Young

    First of all what a lovely post, Maddy. It really made me smile and I’m so pleased to be a part of it! I agree that it was so easy meeting everybody, like we already met because we know a lot about each other already. It sounds like you packed it all in this weekend, but that’s what you have to do sometimes. Sounds worth it though. That is a great view from your hotel room. #lovelondon.

  3. Rachael

    It was so lovely to finally meet you Maddy, and glad you had such a good weekend all round! Your son’s story is adorable… and love how the end for him is just the beginning for you… That’s what I always love to say, the end of every story is always the start of something new :)

  4. Susie Fiddes

    What a fantastic weekend. I think having a break from the kids and pushing outside the comfort zone towards a meet up must have felt great. Hopefully you’ll run this event in the future as it would be fab to meet up and chat to other inspirational women who blog x

    1. Maddy Post author

      We’ll definitely be organising another and would love it if you could join us – it is so good to talk to other writers. xx

  5. Sophie Lovett

    Theres not much I enjoy more than solo train journeys… Not that they happen very often these days! I definitely need to combine our next meet-up with a bit of me time. If only to partake in the cocktails… It was a really lovely day though, even without being able to stick around. Roll on next time! xx

    1. Maddy Post author

      It hadn’t occurred to me to look forward to the train journey, I was all fixated on seeing you guys but you’re right, it was a real treat! Looking forward to more chat and cocktails. xx

  6. Alice @ The Filling Glass

    Friendships are so valuable, how lovely that you got the chance to enjoy them last weekend. It sounds like you had a really great time. And I am envious of that train journey – what a luxury to have that time and nothing pressing to do! I’m glad you managed to revel in it. xx

  7. Verily Victoria Vocalises

    What a wonderful post Maddy. It sounds like you had a great weekend. It is so good to be able to get away from your family (as much as you love them) and have some ‘you’ time. What a great bunch of ladies to meet up with. I am SO looking forward to meeting you properly at BlogFest and I hope we can sit and have a chat :) Thank you for linking to #PoCoLo x

  8. Louise

    So glad that you had such a lovely weekend and love the story on Post-It notes that greeted you on your return – short and sweet! Thanks for sharing it with #ftmob :-)


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