A few weeks ago on a lovely, sunny Saturday, the girls and I headed up to Trentham Gardens for the afternoon. Trentham is somewhere we go several times a year – it’s one of our favourite places to visit as there are loads of things there for the girls to enjoy whatever the season – the lakeside walk and fairy trail, the new and improved adventure playground, the extensive gardens, the maze, the barefoot walk… the list goes on!
This visit was a little bit different to our usual afternoon out though, as we were going to meet up with two other bloggers: Kerri-Ann with her boy G from Life As Our Little Family; and Jenny with her son B and daughter MM from Let’s Talk Mommy. I’d seen on Instagram that they were planning to spend the day there and as I’ve been following them both for a long time on social media I was really keen to meet them. So I kind of…invited myself along. And they are both so lovely that they didn’t bat an eyelid and instantly said yes of course I could join them.
I was SO nervous about meeting them in person – they’re both very successful bloggers with huge followings and I’m just little old me, still feeling like I’m just starting out in a way (even though I’ve been blogging for just over a year now). I’d already stepped way beyond my comfort zone by contacting them and asking if they minded me popping in to say hi. I honestly expected to only stay for about half an hour – just enough time to introduce myself and have a quick chat – and then I’d planned to leave them to continue enjoying their afternoon as I didn’t want to gate-crash their meet up for too long and outstay my welcome. But in the end we stayed for about three hours in total and not once did we run out of things to talk about. We chatted about children, parenting, holidays, blogging, photography… all stuff that I don’t really get to talk about with other people I know. It was only tired children and rumbling tummies that made us leave I think!
We had the perfect day for it too – beautiful blue sky and gorgeously warm in the sunshine (though a little chilly in the shade – we kept forgetting that it was still only April!). We ate ice cream and the children played absolutely brilliantly together, especially considering the age difference – my eldest is ten and Jenny’s youngest is only three. They played in the new pirate ship sandpit area, ran around for ages playing football together, relaxed in the deckchairs and explored around the fountains in the Italian Gardens. By the time we eventually left my girls were completely worn out but still chatted the whole way home about their new friends (and they still talk about them now, asking when we can met up with them again!)
I know it sounds silly, especially coming from a thirty-four year old woman, but I don’t really have many friends. My two best friends live in completely different areas of the country and so I only get to see them once or twice a year – partly because we’re all at very different life stages and partly because, well, life is busy and just gets in the way of us being able to make plans. So I often feel quite lonely and can go whole days without having any kind of interaction or conversation with another adult human apart from my husband. The blogging world, although mostly virtual in nature, is giving me a little community of like-minded people to talk to, and meeting them in person is just the icing on the cake.
Here are some photos from our afternoon: