Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Village life...

I come from a village life, in England.

My siblings still live in quaint villages there, still.

I am teased (criticised?) a fair bit for my addiction to social networking interaction - by family, and by others (other, "busier" folk.)

But I am a girl who sees the utter positivity in the "My kids are driving me bloody mental" type status and blog posts and tweets that I read.

The friends I've made, across forums, the bloggershere and the twitterverse - are mostly mothers, of one, two, three, or more children. They have it tough. I know they do.  Being a Mum - it may not be "hard", as such, but far out, it can be undeniably boring, at times.

And so, to those who chose to get their frustrations off their chest via their status updates  - myself included - good. Go for it.

If that allows the frustration (and, dare I say it, the resentments?) to pass, then that is a positive thing, I reckon.

Is this any different to eras past?

My Grandmother, here in Australia, raised her children in Adelaide during the war in the 1940's - and she lived the equivalent of a village life.

She too shared with all the women in her area. The streets around her home in a small inner suburb - all of the families knew one another. Skills and children were shared. Until the day she died, my grandmothers' closest friends were those that she had shared her mothering with, indeed, shared life her whole adult life with.

My Mother lived in villages across the south coast of England, with five children, in the 1970's. Village life, where women shared, all the time. Shared recipes, shared meals, shared children, and the care of the children. Shared the work, shared the support. Shared the frustrations and resentments, as well as their pride and joy.

These days, I am lucky to live in a part of Adelaide that closely resembles a village. At our local shops, the children and I are all known by name.

We have friends, close friends, who live just a few houses away.

We have village amenities like a local church, a local pub and a duck pond.

And the sharing of skills, and support?


This year, I am committed to making the habit of ensuring that my strengths get shared with other friends with the same frustrations and difficulties and time restraints.

Car pooling for school runs? Yes

Can I set you up a website whilst you create me scented candles? Yes.

If I bulk cook casserole one week and share, I can then enjoy your shared lasagne? Yes? Soup for fruitcake? Yes.

Come for a play date and make playdough with your children and mine, whilst I get on and iron? Yes

We'll come to you, and you can fold washing and garden, whilst I play dress ups with your children? Yes

Can I take your girls to ballet with mine, whilst you take my son with yours to Milo Cricket? Yes

Six children for the morning whilst you get a pap smear done? Yes. (Mine is booked in for next month - I know the deal is reciprocal.)

And in full circle, I know that I can share and genuinely support via all of the online methods I love.

Share the hard bits.

Share the skills.

Share the frustrations along with the love.

Share the essence of each other in these friendships we make.

Online or in real life. Be a village.

It also takes a village, I believe, to keep a mother sane.


  1. i grew up in an enviroment like that and i loved it unfortunatley its not the same where we live now and i cant give my kids the same experience ....quite sad really ...thanks for another great post

  2. Excellent post!
    I couldn't agree more!! :)

  3. Love it Lucy, I'm so glad you are in my (global) village xx

  4. Beautiful Lucy - Yes to village life - wherever we live it. You & I are lucky to live in villages, but I honestly believe much of this can be replicated by mothers everywhere. It just takes willingness to extend a hand, and ask for one too.

    (re your comment on the MamaBake post I wrote last week:

    You're spot-on with the similaraties...Great minds think alike eh?! Yay!


  5. Giving makes the world go round! I had a school friend who had triplets, making it 4 kids under 3yrs. She said that she can never repay all the people who helped her by reciprocating in kind, cause most of them were pensioners or empty nesters, but she said something I'll always remember. By helping me (she came over with a huge pot of soup after my #3 was born) she helped continue the cycle of service and helping out - that it didn't matter who received it if we all had this mindset it would continue on.

    I like living in a world where a sense of community exists and where you know that help is just a phone call, email or whatever away........

    Thanks as always for the post Lucy. You really are fantastic at reminding us of the important things in life. Luvya!

  6. Here here! And to those who have a go at us for being online - I poke my tongue out to them. So ner.


  7. I could not have put it better if I tried. This is the way we should all live, the way I wish we all lived... It's about time, and care, and honesty... on line and in the 'real world' village.
    beautiful, just beautiful.

  8. When you hear hear, is it a here here or a hear hear..?

    Anyways. Agreed! Great post Lucy.

  9. Perfectly said Lucy and I for one praise the village that is Blogo-ville.

  10. I just love this post Lucy! So awesome - just the way things should be & hopefully are! Thanks for writing it!

  11. sometimes i wish we lived more of a village life. sadly i didn't even know that my next door neighbour has a daughter a month younger than charlotte, until recently. she came over for coffee last week, so that's something.

  12. fantastic post lucy, love it, so proud to call you a friend xxoo

  13. So true. Many women don't have feel the support of a real life village, perhaps this is why so many of us come to blog? No matter, real or online, it does take a village to raise a child.
    Great post, Lucy.

  14. Hear, hear! The village may be online, but it is still a village. And maybe your comment about it taking a village to keep a mother sane is where the original one about raising a child came from. After all, a sane mum is a much better mum.

    Thank you for sharing (dropping by from the Fibro)

  15. Great post Lucy! And so true.

    thanks for Rewinding at the Fibro!

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