I’ve been blogging for a REALLY long time. My first blog was a travel blog that I wrote in 2008/09 while on our world trip. And I started writing my Tales of a Twin Mum blog back in 2011 when my boys were tiny and squishy. That’s six years ago now!!
At first, I started it to write about the fun involved in having twins. I was so bored of being told ‘rather you than me’ and how people would ‘rather die than have twins’ – I wanted to create something positive for new parents of multiples to try to cancel out some of the negativity we faced when we were new parents. That was another reason why I launched my first book last year (Don’t Panic! A Practical Guide to Twins, Triplets and More is available from your local Amazon kindle store).
Then I used the blog to log my second pregnancy with my daughter and to write about the differences between my pregnancies and the differences in raising twins and a singleton. Next, I wrote about our migration journey because I thought it might help other families who were going through the migration process. Since we’ve been in Australia, I’ve blogged sporadically about everything from our lifestyle here to trips we’ve taken and toys we’ve played with. It has been eclectic. But that has also put me off writing it because I knew I needed to sit down and work out a new focus for the blog. Writing about anything and everything isn’t fun when you’re a planner like I am – I like to know where I’m heading with something and what I’m looking to achieve from it and how I can use it to help people. Blogging, after all, is about providing useful or inspiring information for readers and I know that just telling you about my life isn’t enough – there needs to be a consistent content plan behind things.
Over the weekend while Hubby was working nights, I sat down with a big notebook and thought about all of the things I’m passionate about. Then I narrowed down my focus to decide on the themes this blog is going to focus on going forward. I went from feeling confused about things to clearly seeing the direction I want to follow. I love a good planning session! I am still working some things out, and I’m likely to be rolling out some changes over time, but now I have my themes together and it feels like they gel together perfectly rather than feeling random.
An overarching tagline came to me first: Chasing the Aussie dream. Because that is exactly what we’re doing as a family. When I started to think about the deeper meaning of the tagline, I realised it was more about striving to make our lives better and to keep on growing as a family. Once I’d figured that out, the three core themes came together easily…
1. Family travel
Family travel is so important to me. I’ve always felt passionate about wanting my kids to see the world and experience travel. I know how much travel has changed my perspective and attitudes, and how much it has taught me and I didn’t really start travelling until I hit 30. Imagine if I’d always been a traveller? What if the things I only learnt and became passionate about at 30 had been introduced to me at 10, or at 5? Maybe I’d have become an an astronomer or a marine biologist. Maybe I’d have learnt more languages. Or taken a greater interest in geography. Travel has opened my mind so much, and I know introducing my kids to the experience will give them a head start in life.
As I’m a regular writer for Australia and New Zealand magazine, it gives me a good an excuse to continue to explore Australia with my kids (not that I need an excuse!). I’m hoping that in the not too distant future we will also be able to expand our travel outside of Australia and share that with you too.
2. Making memories and family fun
Making memories is something I’m really focused on right now. Time is flying and I want my kids to have experiences that they remember forever. Memories that shape who they become when they are older. And I don’t mean things like being bought the right Christmas gift or having a big birthday bash.
From my own childhood, I know the tiny details are what I remember the most. One of my favourite memories is how on a Sunday night sometimes we would toast bread on the open fire for our tea using a big fork. Of course, having toast for tea doesn’t sound exciting and we could easily have cooked it in the toaster which would have been much easier and faster, but the process of being allowed to toast our own dinner on the open fire with our parents was SO exciting and fun. We maybe only did it a handful of times but I can remember it clearly.
I remember wrapping potatoes in foil and sticking them in the bonfire to cook on cold November nights (now as a grown up I know my mum had pre-cooked them before they were placed in the embers, but at the time I remember how much better those potatoes tasted smeared in butter on those chilly nights so it was totally worth the extra bit of effort). I remember simple picnics at Clumber Park and eating fish and chips wrapped in paper on the bracing seafront at Skegness. (OK, it’s weird that most of my fond childhood memories seem to involve food – maybe that’s something worth remembering for creating our own traditions!)
I want my kids to take little details like that away from their childhood instead of spending their entire lives on the iPad and computer (which trust me is increasingly hard to prise them off!) So whether it is sharing our experience of toys, having fun outdoors or trying out some new things as a family, I want to share our experiences with you.
3. Creating a family life you love
The last couple of years since we moved to Australia have been filled with different experiences, but no matter how busy we’ve felt or what financial situation we’ve found ourselves in, I’ve always known that I needed to work for myself from home. While hubby has always liked the idea of a stable job and a regular income (for himself and for me), I’m a positive soul who believes that you need to follow your heart when it comes to work. Work isn’t something you choose, it is something that chooses you. And if you’ve got it right, your work should be way more than just a job. When you’re on the right path, you know it and feel 100% sure what you’re doing is where you’re supposed to be. Since I started Smart Steps to Australia last year, that’s exactly how I’ve felt, and as I type these words, it is also how I feel about this blog too.
Finding the right job or business is also about more than just you – it’s about finding something that works with your family life too.
Whether or not you believe in woo woo stuff, sometimes I think things are beyond our understanding. I had no concept of what being an entrepreneur meant before we arrived in Australia. But shortly after arriving, I began ghostwriting for an inspiring entrepreneur who taught me so much. It feels like I was being guided on stepping stones towards this life that I’m now living (and loving). I honestly do believe our life is all about learning and growing and we can make the effort to create a life we love by following signs, taking opportunities and also being truly positive and determined about the sort of life we want to create for ourselves.
A great life doesn’t happen by accident. It happens because you make it happen. And you make it happen because you believe it will happen. So YOU can create a life you love and I want to include more positive, inspirational posts on the blog going forward to help nudge you towards that better life. Don’t get me wrong, a great life is a bit like a rainbow – when you get up close it just moves further away. You will never arrive at the ‘perfect life’ – all the fun comes from the chase and the journey. You are at your best when you’re growing and developing and working towards improvement and that is something I want to explore more on the blog.
Tales of a Twin Mum content
I’m a massively positive person, and I’m excited that this blog is going to be a space to share my positivity with you. It also feels like it complements my Smart Steps to Australia blog, as having the right mindset is so important if you’re considering a big move across the world, and moving abroad is one of the biggest learning and growth experiences you can share as a family.
Whether you have twins, one child or siblings that were born in different years, or even no kids, whether you have an interest in moving to Australia and want to learn about the lifestyle here for families or you just love to read about family travel and family fun – I hope you’ll continue to find interesting articles here that challenge you, inspire you, educate you, make you laugh, make you cry or just make you feel that you’re not alone. In the meantime, you might like to check out two of the pages I have just redeveloped: My About page and my Work With Me page.
I’m excited to get the blog going again. And I’m so glad you’re coming along for the ride!