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 Stephanie Buckley.
A little bit about me and my family.
I’m Stephanie, formally a part-time travel and lifestyle blogger, now a new mother to baby boy Phoenix and a “parenting”, travel and lifestyle blogger!
In my pre-baby Phoenix days, I had plenty of experience with mommy duties as I’ve had a step-son, Scott for over 10 years. We’ve had family holidays, school runs, trips to Temple Street, birthdays, communions and confirmations so I’m well-prepped when it comes to baby boys.
We’re hitting the teens now and it’s a different story altogether. Scott is an amazing big brother, Phoenix lights up as soon as he sees him – he’s besotted with him.
We’ve learned that families come in all shapes and sizes, my partner David and I are proud of our strong 21st Century blended family.
Our favourite way to spend time together is...
As a family, we love to spend time outdoors together. We’ve brought Scott on adventures all over Ireland. From walks in our local park, to hiking in Glendalough and exploring The Giant’s Causeway to Cliff Jumping in Ballintoy.
We’ve created some amazing family memories over the years and now Phoenix is getting in on the action. His first outdoor family activity was a hike up the Sugar Loaf Mountain, strapped to his Dad in the baby harness.
We didn’t make it to the top as we quickly regretted the decision. The winds were very strong and the pathway to the summit was just too dangerous – you live, and you learn!
More recently we rented a cruiser and explored the River Shannon for 4 days with all the family - nannies, cousins, aunties and all. Phoenix loved being up on deck helping his Dad navigate the waterways. We’re planning a family trip to the Cliff’s of Moher for our next outdoor adventure.
Our most cherished family moment is...
To date (Phoenix is only 9 months old) our most memorable, special moment was watching the Late Late Toy Show together – an Irish family tradition and our first as a family of four.
I remember being extra excited during the lead up to the show. Every year we (David, Scott and my sister and her daughter, Lola Rose) get matching PJ’s, Dominos pizza and watch the toy show together.
Last year, Phoenix was only a few weeks old and he was snuggled up on the couch between David and Scott in his little elf onesie and matching elf hat – needless to say, I got tonnes of photos.
The thing that gets in the way of us spending time together is...
Work is the obvious one. I’m self-employed and it seems like I have a never-ending list of things to do! My other half also has his own company, which is very demanding. The phone never stops! The only time we can somewhat switch off is when we’re on holidays.
Our pledge as a family:
From here on in, we pledge to commit to more family walks in the evenings. We’re lucky enough to live directly across the road from Newbridge House and Farm (it’s literally only a 5-minute walk from our front door), so there’s no excuse not to get out for a ramble.
I’ll also aim to book one outdoor family adventure per month. The weeks fly by so fast, I find if you don’t have a plan of action, things tend to be left on the long finger. Whereas if something is booked in, it’ll be done!
Since Phoenix was born we’ve really neglected quality couple time. I think one-on-one time with your partner is massively important and sometimes gets left by the wayside when a new baby arrives.
Only last month, David and I started a monthly “date night”, which we’re definitely sticking to. It was as simple as pizza in Milanos and a movie, while Nanny Joan (David’s mom) watched Phoenix. Honestly, it did us the world of good to have that quality time together – just us. I’m already excited for our next date.
To maximize your quality family time, take our Family Moments Challenge.
We would like to thank Stephanie for sharing her special family moments with us. To read more stories just like Stephanie's, click here.