Every week I feature an interview with a blogger, so that whether you know of them or not, you can get to know them a little better! This week we meet Mary from Over 40 And Mum Of One. Thanks so much for taking part Mary 🙂
Tell me a little bit about yourself and your family
I’m Mary, recently turned 50, and not quite come to terms with that yet. I’m mum to an eight year old son who keeps me on my toes. We live in North Oxfordshire with our fluff ball of a cat called Brewster. I love motor racing, specifically Formula One and am a massive Ferrari fan, as is my son (I’ve trained him well). We love getting outdoors whatever the weather and going on adventures near and far. My parents live in rural Southern Spain, and my son is following in his Gramps’s footsteps by being a bit of a bug hunter.
What do you like doing to be you, when you are not parenting, working (if you do), or blogging?
When I’m not working on the blog, I’ll be found somewhere with my camera round my neck or with my head in a book. I’ve almost finished a two year adult education photography course, which has been lovely, and has given me some real ‘me’ time away from home.
What is your biggest achievement to date?
In my personal life, it would have to be having my son and hopefully not doing to bad a job of being Mum. On the blog front, I’m not sure I can pin point one thing, we’ve had so many wonderful opportunities and made some great memories thanks to blogging.
From your own experiences, what do you find the hardest part of parenting and what is the easiest/most rewarding part?
I find parenting exhausting. I’m not sure whether that’s because of my age, because I have a son who’s non stop from the moment he wakes up to the second he falls asleep, because 99.9% of the time I parent alone, or whether that just is parenthood for everyone. Is there any easy part? I’m not sure I’ve found it if there is. The most rewarding is part is watching my son grow and develop his own personality. He’s always been a very shy, anxious boy and has found school a challenge. He’s now eight, and over the last year we’ve really seen his confidence growing – he’s more vocal in class and will offer information more willingly. It’s wonderful to watch his progression and see him become more independent from me. Bitter sweet at times, but it’s the way it should be.
Parenting in itself is no mean feat; how do you juggle everything you need to in order to get everything done on a daily basis?
Planning, I’m a planner by nature and I’ve always got a list on the go for something. We have a really tight routine in the morning and my son does his school reading and spellings as we’re having breakfast. We do whatever homework he is given after school as soon as he receives it, so it’s done and out of the way. I’m a firm believer that weekends are for fun and not school work. I have a couple of days a week that I can work on the laptop solidly while my son is at school and I try to manage anything else on my mobile when he’s in bed. Housework and shopping get’s done on the other days. I help in school one afternoon a week and am at college one morning a week. Everything get’s done, but the house might not always be spotless.
Why did you decide to start blogging?
When my son started pre-school it was the first time I’d had any time to myself since he’d been born. I needed something to do to wake my brain up and feel like me again, but I knew I didn’t want to return to a structured work environment or put my son into childcare for more than the 15 hours he was entitled to at the time. Blogging was the perfect outlet.
Tell me a bit about your blog?
My idea when I started, was to chart the life of an older first time Mum, but it’s really taken on a life of itself, and my age has never really been that big a part of it. I share my adventures with my son, the highs and lows and the struggles. But we all get involved with reviews, anything that fits with our family life, from days out at the Zoo to a trip to a historical site that fits with a school project, through to games, toys and books. I’m very much into books.
What do you want your blog to achieve and where do you hope to see it go as it grows?
I want to continue to chart our family life and adventures, and see it grow and develop as my son changes through his school life. I may well go back to work in some form or another but still very much want the blog to continue.
What advice would you give someone who is thinking about starting a blog?
Know that it takes a lot more time and effort to keep a blog going than you can possibly imagine. Don’t get hung up on stats. Some of my blogging friends despair of me as I never look at my stats unless a PR asks for something specifically. I blog for me, and if others like what they read, then brilliant. Yes I’m sure I could be far more ‘in your face’ and proactive and be a ‘bigger’ blogger but it’s not me. Don’t worry about charts and don’t compare yourself to other bloggers, it’s a pointless exercise and it won’t make you happy.
If you could have dinner with three people (dead or alive), who would it be and why
1) I would love to meet my Dad’s Mum. She died years before I was born and I’d love to know what her voice sounded like and to talk to her about being an older Mum of one too.
2) I’m a huge motor racing fan and my first childhood hero was James Hunt. I did actually meet him a few times as a child, but never as an adult before he died. I’d love to have dinner with him, he was a real character.
3) I’d also love to spend an evening with Madonna – I love her music, she fascinates me and I’d love to see what’s truth and what’s pure fiction about her and her character.
Tell me three random facts about you
1) I probably unknowingly infected an Easyjet flight from Birmingham to Malaga with chickenpox in February 2007. Sorry! I had no idea.
2) I’m totally addicted to Project Runway, Next Top Model and Say Yes to the Dress. I’m not sure what that says about me, but they are all on series link on my Sky box.
3) I can’t cope with being late. I’m always early for everything, it’s not ideal to be married to someone who is never on time for anything.