Category Archives: The Red Head Diaries

Working Mum And Stay At Home Mum

Early Jobs

I have always loved working. I’d had Saturday and weekend jobs as a teen; the thrill of your first wage packet, then each one afterwards.
I’ve moaned about different days at work, had tears of sadness and of course the laughter.
My weekend jobs consisted of hairdressing salons, a residential home or photography, the last one I loved!! (I wish I had pursued it).
I left school wanting to be a hairdresser, but quickly realised my mistake and went for a job in the care industry.
There I stayed for many, many years. I switched from different employers but always within the same industry.
From a small residential home to a cottage hospital; to care at home, to a much bigger hospital. I had always loved working.


Having Babies and Maternity

When I went onto Maternity and had babies there were moments where I thought about not returning to work, how I’d miss them, the dread of missing out on all their important moments. But once I had returned I’d always liked it and there was never any question I’d be a stay at home mum. At the time we were lucky to fit child care in with family and friends; it worked well. It felt important to me to keep some kind of social aspect outside of being a Mum. The balance felt right.



I ended up losing my job at the bigger hospital; I was devastated – but I came to other opportunities and was able to experience other things as an agency; and found it even easier to balance home and work life. Things at home then changed; I fell pregnant again, then I wrote my car off (not my fault), I became ill with the pregnancy condition Hyperemesis which saw me having to give up work, or at least take maternity a lot earlier than planned. Luckily for me, these employers were really accommodating to this. When our much-loved baby didn’t make it home; it left me feeling incredibly confused about everything I had ever done since beginning my working life – literally everything changed.

It didn’t take me long to decide that I could not return to doing care work; I told my employers and they told me I could go back anytime. But I knew I wouldn’t be able to.


Staying At Home

With the aftermath and a new pregnancy I didn’t return to any work; I became a stay at home Mum; not only did I have the hyperemesis again; but of course there was no way I could face it; particularly when I knew I would be starting something brand new –  I had no clue what.

I remained a stay at home Mum for three years; we had two babies in that time; I did do the occasional freelance work here and there; but nothing on the scale of making “real” money.

Being a Mummy after an Infant Loss.

It has been wonderful being able to stay at home with them, make memories, do more things with them; not rushing through life. I was able to do more baby groups with baby number 4 and for a short while with baby number 5.

Being a parent after loss certainly changes you; your perspective on life and what is important – but the ugly side was being too scared to leave them with anyone else; too scared to miss out on a moment, even a second of their life; it can be incredibly suffocating and very isolating; which in turn led me to make a new decision.



In 2015, when our youngest turned 4 months old (the same age my eldest was when I returned to work with her); an opening came at the school my children attend; it was to only be an hour and a half a week; but I felt it was an hour and a half of being me again. It wasn’t about escaping the baby or not wanting to be around her; but I really and maybe even selfishly wanted some time to myself, and that was to go to work, even if it was only a very short period per week.

I love it. Working with children is not something I ever imagined doing as a job, but now I can’t imagine doing anything else. Well apart from writing full time!! I have increased my hours; it hasn’t been easy to arrange child care; family members aren’t always available and childcare comes at a price. But we have sussed it and it is working well. I love this little part-time job.

It gives me that little break away from the house; a chance for me to miss them, a chance for them (her) to miss me. It works out really well.



Having been both sides of the coin, a stay at home mum and a working mum; the opinions of others really do show through. How society thinks parents – more so mothers should be with work life, how the government also sees parents too.

Stay at Home Mums in particular get a lot of stick for being home; often the case is like ours where the husband goes out while Mum stays at home –  we were okay with that; but I felt embarrassed (not for anyone else, but me personally), because I wasn’t working, leaving the children for someone else to look after. I felt like I would be judged for not going to work. My mother in law was incredibly supportive of it, and felt that all Mums should have the option to stay at home should they wish, with no repercussions financially or from society. Some families simply can’t afford the childcare – like us.

Working Mums don’t escape the judgement either, through forums or hearing people talk about how these Mums spend no time with the children they choose to have. Some Mums don’t have the financial choice to stay at home; the need to live and support using both parents is greater at times than those wanting to stay home and look after their child; this too is us.

Sometimes it feels like a lose-lose battle.



As parents we really are doing the best we can, whether that means a parent staying at home either through love or because finances need or allow them to; or going to work because staying at home would cost families a home and food.

I have really enjoyed being back to work; I found myself lost and at times incredibly lonely being at home. Not working meant there wouldn’t be many outings or Mums coffee mornings, because of having little or no money. As much as I love my children; I love being able to do nicer things with them, take them places and above all.

Keep my sanity!

Working and home balance

Because parenting is bloody hard work; judgement or not. There’s nothing easy about it – but it is incredibly rewarding.

My Cheerful List

My Cheerful List #19

Welcome back to My Cheerful List. A chance to share with you something which has made me cheerful during the week, whether it be large or small, it is important to find something good even when it feels impossible. Thank you for joining me! We have reached week 19.


New Term

The children returned to school this week; I always feel a little hint of sadness when they return; due to missing them. They drive me nuts a lot of the time but love it when they are all home. I guess I do cheat a little by seeing them whilst I work.


Back To Work

I love my job, working with children is something I never imagined myself doing, yet I am going into my 3rd year of working there. It is lovely for the social/adult interaction too; which I think we can all benefit from time to time – providing they’re your right kind of people! I began doing volunteering this week; going in to help the children read. It was amazing, such a privilege to be working with them.


Baby Red

It has been lovely to have some one to ones with the littlest this week. She is such a Mummy’s girl, and times she can be really hard work as she really only ever wants me; which brings me to one of my favourite moments of the week, where she was in the bath and I decided to join her; her face lit up. She used to love Mummy and baby baths when she was months old.




As a birthday treat for my son, we decided to take him and a friend to bowling; along with my Mother In Law. They all had an amazing time and loved every minute. With a McDonald’s for afterwards. We don’t do bowling nearly enough, Baby wasn’t overly keen, but she did enjoy watching and was well behaved.


A Cheerful Birthday Boy

My son turns 10 today. These years have gone so quickly; doesn’t seem long ago that he was having Mummy and baby bath times and cuddles. My only boy, he does get picked on a fair bit with so many girls in the house, but he also gets mothered by them at times too. He is such a gentleman and a sensitive little chap. I am very proud to be his Mum.

A birthday boy


I managed some other posts this week.

If you fancy a read here are the links

National Kiss a Ginger Day

Fiction Friday – Ruins


Thank you for reading I hope you have had a good week.


Mrs S


National Kiss A Ginger Day

Apparently, it would seem this is a thing, it is a day in January to “celebrate gingers”.
I was horribly teased throughout my whole school life, repeatedly called carrot top, or ginger (pronounced with a hard G). People didn’t have a nice thing to say about it.
Even my Mum “joked” that she asked the nurses if I was hers because I am ginger.
It was bloody horrible. I spent so long growing up wondering what the hell I had done wrong, why I was so hated, why my hair colour was so disgusting – or at least that was how I felt because of how much I was teased.

It does set you up, forever, even friends had a go, of course looking back, they weren’t really friends to be doing that.
People had a fascination with wanting to know if we had ginger pubes (or ginger bollocks if you were a lad). But children, adults find it acceptable to ask because we’re ginger, in all fairness, it’s harassment, why people feel the need to know such personal things is beyond me.
I have never understood the ginger discrimination,

neither has anyone else ever had a valid reason to do so either.

“It’s different.”
“It’s ugly.”
“You’re disgusting.”
None of which are valid points to make another human being feel disgusting and unloved.

I don’t think society has changed, as far as I know, my children haven’t been bullied for their hair, which I’m glad about, but that could be because there are more in schools (we’re pretty damn hot).
But I do still hear adults make snide remarks about ginger hair, it only rubs off into the next generation. As someone who deals with baby loss families, I’ve even heard baby loss mums say about their own child “at least they weren’t ginger”. Very unpleasant.
It’s sad and bloody hurtful.

I may be oversensitive, overreacting, but when you have had a lifetime of teasing because of your hair colour, it gives you every right to be sensitive; but at the same time, it gives me the right to stand up for myself.

I’m a redhead, and now I love it, I love it more because all of my children have red hair, although the daughter we lost had strawberry blonde.
National Kiss a Ginger Day? Remember that there could be a redhead out there being teased, being forced to be kissed by some bully because to them it’s funny.

There is nothing wrong with having ginger hair-nothing. The only people who are wrong are those who ridicule others. That’s ugly.

Hot Red Heads

Kevin McKidd
Florence Welch
Ed Sheeran
Prince Harry
Tim Minchin
Kate Walsh
Sarah Drew

So many more!

Facebook Couple

He is my Soul Mate.


I am not “A ginger”. I am a person.

We are bloody awesome!!

The Red Head Diaries

Thank you Midwives – I’m sorry.

There is currently a hashtag knocking around celebrating Midwives; with this a well-known company is donating per every hashtag. #thankyoumidwife.

Difficult Pregnancies


Right from my second pregnancy (my very first ended in miscarriage); it became apparent that I simply do not ‘do’ pregnancy well. The one thing which my body is built to do; just doesn’t do it comfortably. There was certainly never any blooming going on! Hyperemesis and high risk pregnancies to name a couple…


When I was pregnant with my first two I had a wonderful Midwife – S. She had to have been one of the nicest health care professionals, and that she was perfect as a midwife for any first time Mum. S was always patient with me, with my questions with the numerous of times I had to spend the evening at the hospital because I had Pre-Eclampsia symptoms; she always wanted to play it safe. Until a little over 36 weeks, where I ended up being sent over; that time I was induced, eventually having my first child at 37 weeks. I didn’t get to spend a lot of time with her postpartum, as baby was in special care for the first week. But I was pleased to have had her for my midwife.

She even came to my first wedding!

Next Baby


Just over two years later I was expecting baby number two; sickness arrived so did S; once again she was amazing; slightly easier pregnancy. Once he was born she would come out at 9pm to help with my Clexane (we were too squeamish at that time – wait to see); waited with me whilst we waited for a GP as I had a suspected blood clot. Fortunately it wasn’t.

S was brilliant, and many still speak of her now – she is lovely.

Baby Number Three


When I remarried and fell for baby number 3. S was no longer a midwife for the community, a health visitor instead (another perfect role for her). I met B; she was my midwife for this baby

Baby number 3; in my head I had everything planned; I had asked to have a vaginal birth after two caesarean sections; the consultant had agreed. Everything was set – in my head. I had bleeds on and off, I was suffering with Hyperemesis again, ante-natal depression, SPD. So some reason I felt incredibly anxious for this pregnancy.

About 22 weeks I was showing signs of Pre-eclampsia; B sent off bloods, they came back clear. Ten days later symptoms were arriving stronger; my fingers swelled to near splitting; I took myself into see a midwife – not mine. It wasn’t the nicest of experiences – I will leave it there. Twelve days later at 26+6 our daughter was born.

Flashing forward to five week where she died; we left the hospital lost and confused. B came to visit; she was one of the very few health care professionals who came to see us. She went out and collected a prescription which stops milk production; that meant a great deal. B even came to the funeral; or at least the end of it. She didn’t have to but she did.

Baby Number Four


We fell pregnant a couple of months later; B was my midwife again – was relieved it was her. She was the ONE person to put in some support for us professionally. Charities and other places were turning their backs because our baby was too old; but B put us in touch with CRUSE; I am so grateful to her; because she didn’t have to; this was a different pregnancy; she didn’t have to help us deal with the poor outcome of our previous one. But she did. The pregnancy was difficult; weekly appointments, scans; visits to the hospital; plus Hyperemesis; but B remained calm and supportive; she became my advocate.

She helped us bring our next baby home. This baby was going to be our final one.

And then.

Baby Number Five


Then I fell pregnant with my 5th and final baby; where the hyperemesis, made me seriously ill. I could barely lift my head from the pillow, being upright only made me sick. B was once again my midwife, where she did home visits every week because I couldn’t cope with going to clinic, even a slightly wrong smell made me sick; she did everything within her power to make it easier on me. It was an incredibly difficult pregnancy; one which made my sterilisation decision easier! But again she went out of her way to help me bring this baby home too. She ensured I had the top consultant for the level of care I needed too. Helped to get my Clexane prescribed too, as I was immobile through the vomiting (I had the injecting down to a tee – 10weeks until 6 weeks post ought to do it!)



These midwives do not get enough recognition; or thanks.

I will admit I have met some horrors who will stay a part of my pregnancy journey for the wrong reasons; it is a wonder why they do their job.

But I am here to give thanks to S and B for helping me bring my babies home.

Melly died, she never came home – yet B STILL wanted to help, when no-one else did.

S ended up being my health visitor, as we had a specialised one – She is worth her weight in gold! Losing a baby who was not a miscarriage or stillbirth, has been an incredibly lonely place; it is awful but this woman for the first two years, because they are the worst did nothing but show empathy, listened and didn’t push.  I wish more were like her.


Thank you S and B – so much. We’re so grateful.

I am sorry I was such a difficult lady!!!



The Red Head Diaries

My Wish List Ten Things To Do Before I Reach 40

I hit 35 this year; I have finished having babies, now I get the pleasure of watching them grow. My 30th birthday I was newly grieving, suffering with Hyperemesis, anxiety in pregnancy; hoping hard that the baby I was carrying would get to live. Here’s my before 40 wish list.

We don’t have a high income, so I can’t see much of the list being ticked off, but I like lists and well; you just never know.


Wish One

See someone in concert. I would really love to see P!nk, I think she really is awesome her music has gotten me through some tough times, and also been the soundtrack to some fun times too. I know how desperate my daughter is currently wanting to see Little Mix at the moment, so it would well be them before P!nk. At least one would be nice.


Wish Two

Be free from anxiety and depression. It has really hit me hard this year. It is currently knocking me on my arse. Where really I would like to kick the two in the arse; maybe even rid it altogether. They are hideous things to fight. I want to be happy.


Wish Three

Publish another book; either traditionally (doubtful) or Indie Publish. I’ve so many planned, two that I have started out of a series I am putting together, and half way through a thriller, which is kind of out of my comfort zone – this one in particular I would like to finish, as I started it in 2010; it isn’t even a long story. Fear is maybe holding me back. I love writing so much, but I also procrastinate a lot. There is also a book planned out in my head within my niche.

I have to complete this one.


Wish Four

See more of the United Kingdom. I am not one for actively wanting to travel abroad; there is so much heritage here I would like to see first, many of which really fascinates me. I’d love to visit Scotland, take a trip Harry Potter World. I would love to see many more National Trust properties, I think they’re wonderful. Visiting Liverpool and Peterborough to see some special friends, after the times they have visited me. I would love to complete at least one thing from this section.


Wish Five

To arrange (and do) meeting some of my online friends. I have made some amazing friends through Babycentre over the years; some since 2011…I think it is about time we met face to face.


Wish Six

Renew our wedding vows at a place we originally wanted to take our marriage vows at. But we’re a solid unit, we have been through hell; we are incredibly close. I think I’d worry that by renewing we would jinx and spoil what we already have.


Wish Seven

Confidence building; learn to care less about what others think of me. I think this has had a huge impact on my attempt at healing from section two; particularly at the moment. I need to like myself, maybe love myself. Learn that sometimes when shit happens it isn’t because I deserve it, or because it is my fault. Bad things happen, relationships, friendships fade, it isn’t always on me. I have a terrible habit of blaming myself for everything, for lost friendships. It hurts me, no one else. Just me. I am ruining my own life, my own self esteem by continuing this train of thought. I deserve to be happy; my islands (Inside Out) need to remain lit. I know a friend who will be pleased with this number.


Wish Eight

Decorate our house, so it is Instagram friendly LOL! I love our house; the area in which we live but we have had babies, financial issues (always boils down to this), health crap. It is time to give our house some love; make it our home.


Wish Nine

Finish the bloody garden! Each year we start off really well, then we either get really nice weather where we want to go out make memories, our weekends are tied up with the children’s hobbies or the weather is really crap, making it difficult to get out there. Again no money and time plays a factor, man power too. I’ve only got to see a spider run across my foot and I am gone; poor husband has to fight with the garden. That and a very clingy toddler; we find ourselves back to square one. Always an excuse.


Wish Ten

Get down and stay at a healthy weight. I am fed up with being a size 18-20/22; round and plump. But I guess it comes back to the vicious circle that dislikes myself, then comfort eating, poor confidence. CRAP excuses I know, but it needs to change and I am already making a start, if you’re following me on Instagram you’ll see. I want to be the Grandparent that takes their grandchildren out for the day, see my children get married. Then I need to get healthy, and happy.


Then I can think long and hard about what to do before I hit 50!


What is your wish list before a milestone age?


The Red Head Diaries

August Favourites 2017

I really am not sure where August 2017 went. It flew by so quickly, or at least it felt like it did. I don’t think we did a great deal, we spent a lot of time at home. But it isn’t always a bad thing; they’re thrown back into daily routine so it can be nice to just spend the time not rushing around. L-Red had her hair ‘dip dyed’

Baton Fun

My older two completed their first baton twirling seminar, they were very pleased with what they learned in just one day.


Two children holding a certificate each and a majorette baton, after completing a seminar.

A quiet week led to my children’s majorette troupe hosting a Charity Competition in aid of St Margaret’s Hospice and Towards Tomorrow Together. Was a fantastic day, hard work to put together, but the day went brilliantly, raising not only money but awareness of these two Somerset Charities.


Trophy in memory of Melody. Majorette Trophy


Annual visit to the local farm shop Maize Maze at Barleymow’s. The children always love it there; many things for them to do including losing ourselves in the maze.


Children on a drum train


Annual camping trip.

Every year for the past few years my husband’s family have all got together to have what we call “The Westival”. We have the most wonderful of times. The children always look forward to it. This year we spent it in Chipping Norton in the Cotswolds. Very beautiful part of the country.


We managed a visit to a National Trust property, Oxford and a children’s Play area. Would love to have spent longer in Oxford, although very expensive the city is very beautiful with its buildings.

Oxford Oxford street with bikes.

Our camping Trip only lasted for such a short time, we’re already planning the next one.

The other end of August

Not a lot of adventures happened, a trip to Vivary Park in Taunton, Exeter for a spot of shopping.


August round up

This August flew by, and I have fought with Mummy guilt of not doing a lot; but there are times, moments in our lives where we simply cannot do everything. There are times where taking days slowly, not rushing around with things to do every single day.

I am the first to admit that I like busy, I like plans, most years we have had plenty to do. This year hasn’t been one of them.

August Bank Holiday was a lovely hot one, we had a BBQ with friends, and a visit to the beach for Ice Cream.  A Great way to end August 2017.


Water fountain


Loads coming up over the next few weeks. So a quiet August was allowed.

Thank you for reading and being patient whilst I changed websites over.

What a headache, but it is done and I am slowly learning all over again.


The Red Head Diaries.

The Red Head Diaries

The Red Head Diaries – Making The Switch

Making the Switch

After lots of to-ing and fro-ing, I have made the decision to switch my blog to self hosted. In all fairness I probably should have made the switch sooner; I should really take my love for writing and do something properly with it. Embrace it more, hopefully grasp some opportunities which may arise. Even if they don’t; well I’ll still love writing.

I am really looking forward to this next chapter, I’ve some subjects I have in mind for the blog as well as book planning in the mix too, I say planning I am already a percentage through book one and three on a series I am working on, plus a stand alone fiction too.

Approach with caution

The switch has been a complete headache, most certainly not for the faint hearted and definitely should NOT be attempted whilst suffering with PMT or dieting (chocolate is a must for switching – or maybe even alcohol). I am pretty sure the company I have chosen to self host with also need a touch of alcohol after speaking to me at least five times in the space of 24 hours. They probably even took bets on how long it would take me to contact them again, or screw up; There were moments of long pause between chats, I could picture them laughing at the screen.

But still it is hopefully done, I am relieved they were patient with me.

I am sure there are still adjustments to be made…please point me in the right direction; I have learned so much within the switching process, that I can’t say how I ever managed before – it has certainly been an eye opener. There were many, many times I asked my husband, why the hell am I doing this? Is it really worth it?

I guess only time will tell.

Thank you so much for your patience with all the swapping around..writing service will resume soon.

The Red Head Diaries Logo

The Red Head Diaries


Best Physical Feature

I’m not overly sure on this one. I’m not really a fan of myself; I struggle to see what anyone else sees. Looking in the mirror doesn’t give me a lot in return. I spent a lot of my childhood being mocked about the colour of my hair, or something about my being – even friends would have a bash. Even my Mum once told me that she asked the nurses if I was hers due to the colour of my hair…

My Grandfather on my Dad’s side made it very clear I was the wrong gender.

I have never felt beautiful or pretty, yet my new husband tells me at least once a day that I am.

I have learned to love my hair after years of dying it black, I eventually had the colour cut out and went natural, although I have had reds added to enhance it about a year ago. I really love that my children have the colour.

I often imagine myself as a bit of a laughing stock when people see me, no confidence in myself, I really do have very low self-esteem, I try to tackle it, but nothing really works. I just see ugliness. I hate feeling this way.

So if I were to really think, my Best Physical Feature would be my breasts…not the look of them!

But what they have done over the years, feeding my beautiful babies, from as little as nine days to three plus, expressing under extreme circumstances, one way or another I have managed to feed them. I was continually told during my first pregnancy that because no one else in my family breast fed, I wouldn’t be able to either, without the support professionally and personally my journey with her lasted nine days. My son was two years but included top ups of formula, because I was told he needed it.

When I our premature baby was born at 26+6, I was determined to give her the best start I possibly could, as her feeds upped she would be topped up with formula, which I found mentally difficult. I was pleased that for the five weeks we had her I was able to express at least some of her feeds.

My next two babies took to breastfeeding with ease, one went to just after three years old, and the other is still going strong at just over two years old. Just recently our four year old was really poorly, getting dehydrated and we weren’t getting the best advice, so I expressed within 24 hours she was finally feeling better.

So that’s why I feel my best physical features are my breasts. They have Super Powers.

The Red Head Diaries

The Red Head Diaries

Cricket St Thomas. A Trip Down Memory Lane

Cricket St Thomas

It is strange, the older we get the more sentimental we get about things we never realised were that important. You can go about your everyday life, when something, someplace, someone triggers so many memories; you find yourself walking down memory lane.


On an outing to have afternoon tea with a friend at a location I had grown up visiting – many, many times; we chose to take a walk around the gardens, of course, it was a little wet.

The grounds are truly beautiful, but there is also this hidden world within.

(Google images)

Cricket St Thomas was home to many childhood memories, where we would spend a lot of our weekends; our family like a lot of the families in our area had family passes due to having milk deliveries, so it was mostly a reasonably cheap local place to have a family day out.

Remember pulling up in the car park, keen to run around, keen to see what things we could do, my Dad (may he rest in peace), absolutely loved going, insisted we went most weekends, I can remember having a little moan about repeatedly going, but looking back now as an adult I can see the attraction, especially with the family passes.

There was so much to see and do; so many animals – Lemurs, Otters Big Cats as well as the famous Sea lions, I remember there were regular shows involving them. There is the stunning Manor; it was once the setting for BBC show To The Manor Born. As well as the beautiful little church set within the grounds.


If we were lucky enough we’d get a ride on the railway, with two stations, it took us past the flamingos, through some woodland, I remember seeing a wooden play area, within the woods, the children who would be playing would wave as the train journeyed by. As we reached the stations and left the train behind us, we could hear the noises of the jungle cat jeep, and below was a steep d hill down towards the mill which looked out over the lake, there was a machine half way down on the railings, where you could buy duck feed; it would either not work at all, or give you lots of the feed. That is still there.

There were buildings looking out on to the lake, where at one point you could do crafts, but eventually became a little café, behind were stables, deer and horses (I think) lived there.

Beautiful picnic areas, the iron figures which were dotted around the park and the wooden play fort made this wildlife park a wonderful place to make memories.   At the end of the day we’d follow the road, which felt like it was never ending out through fields, occasionally you’d see the animals as you drove by. It was almost like leading you to a sense of calm for on the way home from such a busy day.


Some years later, the park would become home to “Blobby land”…You know the Pink and Yellow weird looking character, which starred in television show Noel’s House Party. Crinkly Bottom came to stay.

(Google Images)

A lot of the wildlife park became a village for Mr Blobby and even Noddy land had a special place too. There were still lots of things to do, and I remember the park remained busy each time we visited.

Sadly it didn’t last very long, and the new attractions began to close, things began to change.

The park slowed down, animals were moved out, and some of the rides were transferred to different parks. Before long the park closed as a Wildlife Park, turning into Lakes and Gardens, seeing the Manor turned into an exclusive adult-only hotel.

For a while after the main park closure, you were still able to visit with children, I was able to take two of mine for a short while, but it was never like how it was when I was growing up. 2009 was probably the final time we visited.

Memory Lane

Until recently, when a friend and I went for afternoon tea in the hotel, once we’d finished we took a walk around the gardens, it felt as though we really were walking down memory lane. Only nothing was the same. Of course, the animals, the rides, the happiness were all missing.

My friend and I went on a Saturday afternoon; as a child it would have been busy with families, walking or sitting with their picnics. But it wasn’t.

There was an eerie feel to the park, as we walked we remembered the places which we spent many an hour at, there were parts we could no longer reach or see –  the train was long gone, the water fountain redundant, discoloured from the lack of use.

Cricket St Thomas

The lake is still there and is still very beautiful, but it is without the flamingos or the sound of the train chugging by.

The train station abandoned, weeds overgrew what was once the track bed, bushes in front of us replaced what would have been the line which went from station to station.

Cricket St Thomas

The stables in which the horses once were, the area where it got busy with wondering children wanting to peer in at the animals, a bricked well stood in the middle, often parents would briefly rest there whilst the children explored the area. They were empty stables; a silence replaced what there used to be.  The further we explored the sadder the place felt, it was almost emotional I guess, seeing the places that made such wonderful memories, is now nothing but empty rusty shells.

Cricket St Thomas

Walking further, what once was the food court, a place for ice cream, or a cuppa, is now ghostly, redundant chair and table stood alone and unloved.

Walking some more, more overgrown area, stinging nettles framed a footpath, a bridge over a miniature lake, stood unused and forgotten.

Cricket St Thomas

The iron statues which were a fun feature of the original park still live within the grounds; only now there are no children playing beside them, or copying their postures. No hugs from children pretending to include them in their play.


Beautiful buildings, and a forgotten land.

The Church remains a stunning building, both inside and out, tiny. My friend and I entered and lit candles for our babies, (for a donation), it was peaceful.

Cricket St Thomas

The Manor remains its beautiful self too, only rather than children playing on the lawns in front, there’s space for croquet and boules. This is lovely too. But it just isn’t the same.

It is wonderful the manor is still there for tourists, or for local adults; and that the greenery to some degree also stays, no houses have been built, other ugly buildings added.

It is just such a great shame, what was once such a wonderful place to be; which is now a place where time has forgotten. Most likely never to return, that is the sad part. It could be so much more; the estate has much more to offer. Maybe one day if the hotel chain is unable to continue;  if the lakes and gardens were freely open for all, maybe someone could love the place (and financially able of course), to return it to its former glory. Our children could make the memories we once had.


Did you ever visit Cricket St Thomas when it was open as a wildlife park? It was well advertised on the television; and there were signs on the M5 too – they didn’t change until fairly recently.

I wish I had photos of what it was like before today.

Thank you for Reading.

The Red Head Diaries



10 Songs I Love Right Now

I love music, it is one of my favourite things, I don’t have a specific genre in which I favour. I have such a wide range of music I like. Musicians are magical, the way they write lyrics, then the music to go with them, some more memorable than others. They have powers, some to make you cry, some to make you smile, they can trigger memories (happy or sad), make you stand up and dance, or give you inspiration to move from a place in which you are stuck.

Today’s topic is 10 songs I love right now. Please head over to YouTube and check these tunes out.



  1. Moana (I’m a parent!) Happiness is where you are.
  2. P!nk It is hard to pick a favourite song of hers, I love pretty much all of them. But I’ll pick Blow (One last kiss)
  3. Ellie Goulding Still Falling for you
  4. Justin Timberlake and Anna Kendrick’s version of True Colours (again parent..)
  5. Staind Outside
  6. Ed Sheeran Castle on the Hill
  7. James Arthur Say you won’t go
  8. Sara Ramirez The Story
  9. Aron Wright In the Sun
  10. Audioslave I am the Highway


I’ve found so many I love, but I’m saving these for a later post I’m sharing on Melody and Me.

Do you have any favourites?