Family Moments: Sadhbh Devlin

Family Moments is about the wonderful experience of connecting as a family.

In this series, we encourage parents to take a look at those truly special family moments. Memories that evoke a feeling of pure joy because they represent quality time with the people we love the most. The realities of modern day life can make these family moments feel out of our reach a lot of the time. Through this series, parents take a look at the obstacles that can get in the way of these happy family experiences with a view to making some changes so that life can involve more of them. Today we’re speaking to Sadhbh Devlin.

A little bit about me and my family.

My name is Sadhbh and I’m a mum to twin 9-year-old girls. My husband and I both work in a freelance capacity - me as a children’s author and content creator for various types of media and himself as a Fine Art Handler (installing art in galleries, etc. I know, I can’t believe it’s a real thing either!)

Our favourite way to spend time together is...

The most fun we have as a family is when we go on little adventures together. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, but whether it’s a walk on the beach or a day trip to visit somewhere new it always puts us in a great mood.

I’m really enjoying having slightly older children. We have lots of great conversations while we’re out and about and I love that they’re still so keen to chat to us about anything and everything. I’m also starting to be aware that they might not want to hang out with us forever so I’m making the most of it!

Our most cherished family moment is...

We went on our first holiday abroad as a family in February. We were so excited about it but on the second day of our trip, both kids got sick. High temperatures, having to find doctors in a strange town, reading medicine instructions in a foreign language – the works.

What initially seemed like a disaster, however, ended up being the opposite. Obviously, I’d have preferred that my kids didn’t get sick at all, but because they were, it forced us all to slow down completely.

Sadhbh Devlin and family.
"It didn’t matter that it didn’t all go perfectly to plan we were all grateful to have had the calm, undiluted time together."

There may have been no sightseeing or late nights, but we didn’t have any other distractions, so the girls benefitted from our full attention. When they napped, I spent time writing or my husband and I took turns to go for walks on the beach.

In the evenings, we watched DVDs together. On the last day, they were well enough to do some shopping and have a meal out and it felt like such a huge treat. We all look back on that holiday as a special one. It didn’t matter that it didn’t all go perfectly to plan - we were all grateful to have had the calm, undiluted time together.

The thing that gets in the way of us spending time together is...

With both of us being self-employed, our schedules can be extremely messy! There are often chunks of time when I’m travelling a lot or working weekends for school/library visits and festivals.

Self-employment is difficult to balance because there is a sense of always having to be ‘on’. You can’t leave your work at the office when the office is your kitchen table! As a result, there are times when we are just too exhausted to make an effort to have quality family time.

Our pledge as a family:

We pledge to separate work from family life.

I’m fortunate that this year I’ve been appointed as Writer in Residence in dlr LexIcon library, and as a result have an ‘actual’ office now. It’s definitely going to help me be more mindful of separating work life from family life and it will help me maximise my work time so that I can be more present for my family when I’m at home.

I’m also planning to get outdoors more often as a family. Nature walks are good for body and soul AND for special family moments!

We would like to thank Sadhbh for sharing her special family moments with us. To read more stories just like Sadhbh's, click here.

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