#atinylife your annual reminder

Dear tinylifers,

This is your annual reminder to make time for yourself over Christmas.

It is a great time of year (for many, not for everyone) to see friends and family, buy thoughtful gifts, decorate your house top to toe in tinsel or greenery: wrap, post, socialise, and eat, eat, eat.

It is a great time to stretch yourself to breaking and end up exhausted.

If you can, plan some days that are empty. Or some hours. Or some minutes. Force yourself to sit down. Or go to sleep. Or breathe.

It is OK to not have a wonderful time every moment of every day over Christmas. It is OK if your children do not have a wonderful time every moment of their school holiday. You get to be a person too.

tiny love

Stay tiny!

tinylife will return on 12th January.

#atinylife JuneAgain

Oh, it’s June again. I probably blogged the exact same whine last year.

June 2019 highlights so far include:-

  • waking up at 3:30am and making a ‘June’ calendar from an IKEA paper roll
  • colour co-ordinating said calendar for each family member
  • saying to myself ‘well, that’ll be OK, I just need not to add in anything else.’
  • organising two more things that same day. For June.June Again
  • scheduling a mental health day for my youngest and thinking ‘oooh duvet day for me too!’
  • losing all patience with a child who doesn’t want to go to school and telling them ‘I would be carted off to the loony bin’ if I home-schooled them. (Extra points for bad parenting AND derogatory language surrounding mental health all wrapped up in one grumpy sentence.)
  • counting down the hours to July, summer holidays, and sweet, sweet freedom!

#atinylife tinyAdvent

Hi all,

December again, and lots of us are in the middle of an insane whirl of activities that come with having school-aged children: nativity-lyrics-tickets this, shopping-bankruptcy that, tinsel-candy-cane this, special-magical-day-out that.

The pressure to remain joyful is intense: and the calendar looks like a story that’s been edited by three different people in four colours of pen. Of course we want to spend time with friends and family, find perfect gifts, wrap them beautifully, reach out to old friends with a card.

But please do remember to look after yourselves too.

Seasons Greetings

And for those of you who won’t be as busy, for whatever reason, special tiny hugs to you. Yuletide can be difficult in lots of ways.

I wish you all a joyful and peaceful festive season. Looking forward to 2019 and more tinylife adventures.

tinylife will be back mid-January.

Cheryl Smith: #atinylife French

I do wish I had room in my life for more than one obsession. Or more appropriately, j’aimerais avoir plus d’une obsession. (My online course suggests I should re-enact my day in French, and my current level does require simpler sentences.)

It’s been longer than I’m letting on since I spoke the language beyond the bonjour, merci, et comment ça va of the casual tourist. It will have evolved and anyway I seem to have forgotten more than I ever knew. But the New Life turns out to involve a home in the Dordogne, and with time running out before the next visit, learning French is crowding out everything else. Though at this stage my needs are simple (shopping at markets, opening a bank account), fluency is a priority. Wish me luck – or should I say souhaite moi bonne chance!

Cheryl Smith France

#atinylife holidays

Hi everyone,

Thanks so much for all the views, follows, likes and comments this year. I’ve really hit my stride with this blog and for that I have you to thank.

Summer Break

I’ll be back with more posts in September – I hope you all have a peaceful, restful summer. We have a couple of weeks camping booked in Norfolk this year, and some time in Glasgow while the kids take part in a Drama Course. I’m also hoping to start eating mindfully, and finally get round to starting ‘The Artist’s Way.’

If there’s anything you think would be a good topic for #atinylife in 2018/19 please do comment below, I’d love to hear from you.

Also, if anyone out there would like to write a guest post – I’d love that too! Here are the guidelines.

Keep life tiny!

Stella Hervey Birrell x

#atinylife TermTime


Don’t get me wrong, I love the holidays. I do. Not having to drag everyone up and into clothes, persuade them that, yes, they do need to eat something before the school run. Days when the To Do list includes ‘go for a walk’ and very little else. And then, it’s tipping down rain so, oh dear, what a shame, we can’t do that either.





However, for me – and the cat – the peace and quiet today, on the first day of term, was awesome, in the truest sense of the word.  It was a bit of a kerfuffle this morning, and no one wanted clothes or breakfast, but from now until 3:15pm all I can hear is the sound of the extractor fan, the odd car passing in the lane, and the tip-tapping of my fingers on the keyboard again.

#atinylife twinkle

It’s Christmas in tinylife land: I wonder how you are? Perhaps you’re a Christmas person, perhaps you aren’t.

I don’t mean a ‘Christmas person,’ as in someone who enjoys Christmas and all its trimmings, I mean that I’ve been trying to remind myself that not everyone on this little planet actually celebrates either the coming of Jesus or the turning of the year from shorter and shorter days to longer and longer ones (especially if you’re in a different hemisphere!).

tinylife twinkle

I wondered how I could write something that didn’t assume Christmas was central to you, a kind of inclusive good wish.

Here goes:

however, and wherever you are – I wish you a twinkle. Not from that specific stable-based star, just a glimmer from everywhere. A twinkle to light your path, and lift your spirits.

tinylife will be back in January.