Fellow blogger Bethanie from Northumberland Family Diaries decided we would set up a little blog series and publish each week over the summer holidays.   We both adore a Northumberland Summer.  There’s a definite change here in summer… ours days are longer and our ‘hot spots’ are busier but I wouldn’t change it.

Our blog series is called Sunday Sanctuary because we wanted a space we could tune into captured moments and think about our own writing whilst taking care of our children and all of their adventures over the holidays.

Now I write for clients, I have less time to write what I feel like writing so my hope is this series will help me bring a little of that back.

Our plan is to write on the same topic each week and see if any other writers would like to join in.  We’ll all publish at 7pm on Sundays.

Week One – What Summer Means to Me

So, it’s week one and we’ve decided to write about what Summer means to us both… I wrote this piece in a notebook first and there’s a little angry red face (below) that tells me the ‘readability’ isn’t good!!

But do you know what… he can stay cross because Sunday Sanctuary is all about writing what I feel like writing and putting the SEO out in the cold… for now.


Our life when we live on a Northumberland holiday

For my son, who is 4 (nearly 5)

beach boys - sky and sand

My boys on the Northumberland coast


These days are our days, they’re our sometimes slow days of catching up, empty laundry baskets and long iced coffee on the lawn.

Toys in all the right boxes, lego matched by colour… for at least a day… sometimes even more.

Freshly washed sandy sheets, tidy drawers, pockets full of shells and picked daisies.  “This is for you mummy”

Unexpected adventures at home.   A shetland pony out for a walk past the front gate and a new jet black lab puppy playfully on his seventh walk of the day.

Clothes drying anywhere but inside and kids with red faces looping past each window on bikes of different sizes.  The bottom drawer of our freezer open four times a day for anyone who wants to see what’s inside.

Listening… like I’ve never heard before to your chatter, the wind, my heart.

Picnic preparations, every single day… snacks upon snacks upon snacks upon just one more snack!

Catching-up with friends from a-far, the dentist, the way the sun makes us feel, the way the doves land on their familiar summer spots.

Loving the way your hair turns more golden in the sun, wondering if you’ll still tell me you’re lonely next year as we listen to the same summer soundscape together?

An iphone detox and waiting longer for sundown, with wine, with company, any moment now and the chickens will be roosting for the night.

Hoping the days last for ever or even better I hear you say “this was my best day” one more time as I kiss your head before you’re sleep.  Drunk on sun, on time, on possibility stretched out.

Grubby hands reaching up to pick ripe homegrown raspberries in baskets over brim, sprinkling loose ones on the soil below for hedgehogs.  Not minding a few nettle stings along the way.

Jam?  Maybe next year.  Tiny apples on the way, some breakfast for birded folk blown down from their branches by windy afternoons.

Caught in a moment of nostalgia.   Summer never lasts for-ever and knowing the feelings of what’s to come… another school year, all of that two-ing, fro-ing, good-mornings, nice chats and waiting to see if you’ve had a nice day, hoping I do too.

Knowing, deep knowing that now and these endless beautiful days are all we really have to hold of our own…people like weather changes, seasons come and go but these incredible simple moments are ours to keep.

Wishing upon a blanket of stars overhead for you, for me, for our country and the rest of the world that they might feel even a drop of how happy summer in Northumberland makes me.

Ever grateful you chose me to be your mum.


Fancy joining in and writing too? 

You are so welcome – we’ll announce the topics each week and you can write in any order you like.  Just tag us in on instagram @creatively.conscious and @northumberlandfamilydiaries with #sundaysanctuaryseries so we can read yours too.  Next week, (week two of the summer hols) our topic is – ‘Making a House a Home’.


PS – My writing has been inspired by working with Susannah Conway recently and grasping a deeper understanding of parenting thanks to this book. 

(NB – Not affiliate links because I don’t know how to do that – haha).