My eldest daughter has an art assignment due this week where she needs to create different textures and display them, then photograph people’s reactions to the textures. Some are nice to touch (soft faux fur, chenille yarn and cotton wool), others are interesting (lego, bubble wrap and fake grass) and others are a bit gross (sticky double sided tape and pre-chewed bubblegum).

My husband has a real aversion to gum and can’t stand the sight of anyone chewing gum. He gets high and mighty when pointing out black splodges of old gum on the pavement and rants about how all gum should be banned from society. He is such a gum Nazi that he has banned the kids having gum since they were young, so this week the kids have all been reveling in ‘assisting their sister with her artwork’. 

Our home has become a bubble gum chewing factory, with all the kids eagerly munching their way way through roughly 50 packets of mixed gum. Needless to say my husband is revolted by the texture being created, but that is the reaction my daughter is looking for when she finally displays her ‘artwork’.

Art is so subjective – what one person feels passionate about, is not necessarily the way another person reacts. I guess the same can be said for life, like my husband’s strong dislike for gum and how most of the world sees gum as an innocuous confectionery.

The art assignment is now complete, with the textures ready for display, so I will have to burst my kid’s bubble of happiness (mind the pun!) and explain to them that there is once again a moratorium on bubble gum in our home.



Couples generally become parents as an extension of their love and commitment to each other. What starts out as a beautiful romance culminates in creating a family together, but it is often difficult to remember the romantic days of the start of your relationship when you are being pulled in so many directions. 

Having kids changes your priorities and all too often the person who used to be your number one priority in life slips down the list. Your partner can fend for himself so his needs are not as pressing as those of your sweet and innocent baby who requires your total care and attention. And honestly – it is exhausting!

It is hard to try to nurture your relationship when you have kids, but it is vital as this is a journey you are on together. This adventure all began from your love for each other and so it should continue, so that once the kids are grown up, you and your partner still remain connected.

Don’t get caught in the trap of just turning into the kid’s parents. You need to keep your identity and keep a healthy loving relationship as not only is it beneficial for you, but it sets a great example for your children to know what a loving, committed relationship looks like.

My advice is to make time to go on dates, share interests beyond just the kids, remind each other of why you love one another, make romantic gestures and communicate. Your kids will all grow up and leave home one day and that should be just the start of your next adventure together, not a time that you are left staring at a stranger who bares a resemblance to a man you once loved.

Happy Valentines Day!



(Picture courtesy of nixxphotography,