You know how a photo can stir up such intense emotion inside of you? Just one look and you are transported back in time to a moment, a feeling or a place. If it is of a person you love especially someone who may not be here anymore the feelings can be even stronger, so much so you feel it in the pit of your stomach or in the inner depths of your heart.
I look at my children and I feel the love I have for them in my heart, its a warm feeling sometimes making me laugh, sometimes making me cry, but it is an intense feeling all the same. I enjoy them as much as I physically and possibly can throughout the day. By the time the evening comes and they go to sleep I reflect, always. Its just something I can’t help but do. I do this even more so when I blog. Even more so when I write things down and remember, and when I edit the photos I have taken from our adventures or days at home.
In these moments of reflection I feel a deep sense of satisfaction. I feel I have achieved something I would never have done so if I never had my children. I feel enriched with life, and extreme amounts of gratitude for what I have with these two beautiful bundles. I promise to never take this role for granted.
When we planned to visit Hever Castle I had every intention of having the best day and part of that for me is capturing it all, so that I can take it all home with me and remind myself of all the happiness that went on in our day. And I did.
I have just finished editing all our photos and they are beautiful. Beautiful to me just because they are my children and I am biased. I am by no means an expert just an amateur lover of photography if I am completely honest.
So when we arrived we walked into the grounds and as always even so when I was 15 years old when my mum first brought me here, I was taken aback by the beautiful green life engulfing me.
Although the castle is a short walk from the entrance it took us over thirty minutes as you know what children are like. They cannot just walk somewhere they have to investigate, to explore and to touch everything they see. They are very visual and perceptive (something us adults tend to forget to be) and so as we walked I let them explore, touch the plants and smell the flowers. I let them watch the water trickling down from the rockery and I watched them run towards the ducks. They stood on the bridge and watched the ducks with great intent for a long time. My children definitely have a love for all animals which makes me so happy.
When we arrived at the castle there was Anne Boylen dressed in her red and black gown. Archie was very taken by her and held her hand and gave a very shy look. The whole way around the castle he asked about the queen. When we came to the staircase he didn’t forget to tell me that the queen walked up here too. We even had to lift him up to the windows so he could see the queen. It was rather special and lovely.
When I walked around the castle, probably being my third or fourth time in my short life I felt so lucky to be able to see it all again. There is just something about being older and seeing things with different eyes. The furniture and interior decor was just beautiful. Whomever decided to keep Hever alive and to open it to the public, thank you. It is just the most beautiful place. I have had a love affair with Hever for as long as I can remember.
There was also a little workshop open where the children could make their own bird feeder or bird box. The children really wanted to do this and couldn’t wait to have a turn. We had to wait 15 minutes or so for the next session and Archie just couldn’t wait to get in and start using the hammer.
We also visited the adventure playground, with a huge wooden castle, zip wire, swings and so much more. The kids had a ball and completely wore me out. Archie had me running left, right and centre!
When I edited this particular photo, it was one of the last ones I did. I had to take a moment to really savour it all. Our day, my children, the happiness all wrapped into one is my little piece of heaven.
My two crazy children don’t know how much joy they bring me, Archie’s baby teeth and scrunched up face makes me smile. In fact it melts my heart, and Sophia’s eyes looking straight at me I know this girl so well and I have seen her grow into a beautiful young five year old right before me, and it has been magical.
The most amazing thing is that this photo was a moment, just a few seconds in our life, and looking back over it tonight makes me tear up, because it pulls the strings in my heart that remind me how lucky I am. To watch them grow every single day is not only a miracle to me but it is a gift.
I love them so much. They show me what life is really about, they may have taken every last bit of energy out of me visiting Hever Castle, but they are absolutely worth it.
To see them running around and watching them explore not only reminds me of my childhood, but of the feelings I felt growing up. I remember the feeling of the wind in my hair as I ran bare foot on the grass and feeling it press against my feet, the warm feeling of being so out of breath but so full of happiness laughing with my friends.
My children remind me of what is important, about my life thus far, about values and meaningful relationships, deep conversations and kindred souls. They remind me to look for the beauty in every day and love as much as I can.
They picked me and I am forever grateful. I am just going to take this moment, the feelings tied into it and the photo, and wrap it up carefully with my most favourite wrapping paper and ribbon and I am going to put it in my pocket. It will stay there for when I or someone I may meet needs a little happiness.
When I do, I will get it out and hand it over, watch them unwrap it and smile. For I will know that a little piece of my heaven and a little piece of the beauty I see in my life will light so bright something familiar in their life.
Like a mirror my happiness will be theirs.
We had a lovely day at Hever Castle and we cant wait to visit again. Thank you for having us!