Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted in Journey to Joy, Life, Parenting | 32 comments

What can Snow White teach me about Joy?

What can Snow White teach me about Joy?

Last weekend I had a Mama fail moment. I’m not going to go into the gory details here but let’s just say that a serious lack of patience was involved and I’m not at all proud of how I behaved.

Which is such a shame as the Easter holidays ended this week and overall it was a lovely break. I managed to keep to my blog schedule by getting up at silly-o’clock while the littles were still asleep, unpacked most of our boxes and even got a headstart on ticking off some of my jobs list like hunting for the perfect anniversary quote for the husband’s card for our 11th wedding anniversary.

It has been trying at times to have two under six year olds squabbling, screaming, breaking things, moaning (“ooh Muuuum!”) and doing all the other endearing things that little people do 24×7 but we’ve also had so much fun hanging out at The Barn, playing in the garden and the playroom, baking uber-chocolaty delights and snuggling up in front of the fire watching movies.

Little man in the playroom

On the the swing together

Blossom in the garden

I’m focusing on these lovely happy memories to get me through the mama guilt.

One of the little people’s, and my, favourite movies is Snow White. Ok, it doesn’t have the CGI pezaz of modern films but the storytelling is so charming, the animals endearing and the moral is a good one to learn. While we watched it again over the holidays I reflected on what she could teach me about everyday joy and making our new house a happy home.

Because I’ve slipped into bad habits. Bad habits that are a reaction to the little people being, well, just little people.

Snow White moved out of her home with nothing but the clothes on her back and made her new house a home through four simple things:

#1 Elbow grease

#2 Patience

#3 Love (and the help of a few woodland creatures) and

#4 By whistling a happy tune.

I want to do the same.

I want The Barn to be a house full of laughter and light, sing alongs at the top of our voices, spinning around until we all fall down, dancing in the kitchen just because.

Rough n tumble play!

Of course it will also be full of tidying up, time spent on the naughty seat, occasional tears and making-up – that’s just family life after all – but I want happiness to be front and centre in my children’s lasting memories.

I’ve written before about being a shouty Mum and I don’t want the image of me yelling, my face contorted in frustration because the bathroom floor is flooded yet again, to be the face my children remember when they think of me.

This year, as I embarked on my Journey to Joy, to walk away from ingrained negativity and towards joy in the everyday, I gathered books together that spoke to me. They filled my mind full of beautiful truth, of the art of happiness.

But here’s the thing – words on a page that aren’t put into practise are not going to make me change.

Practise. Makes. Perfect.

Or in this case, practise makes happy. The kind of practise that you have to remind yourself to do every single day. The kind of practise that you falter, stumble and fall within. The kind of practise you cry through, fail through, dust yourself off and get back to.

After all, you reap what you sow, right?

You reap what you sow

I want my seeds to be kernels of calm, patience, kindness and love.

The path to hell is paved with good intentions, so the saying goes, and my plans to be less impatient, more understanding, less shouty and more go-with-the-flow always seem to go awry as I stumble back into my bad-habit potholes.

So at the moment, as well as reading back through my wonderful happiness bibles, making concrete plans, I’m also working through the uber practical Flourish Handbook by the amazing Cheryl Rickman and gazing lovingly at the gorgeous Daily Greatness Journal that I’m going to be using to put all these great words, ideas and plans into action.

Flourish Handbook and Daily Greatness Journal

I’ve also come across some great ways to create new habits like the paperclip process.

Of course there is always more to read about joy – I’ve got (thanks for the recommendation Renee) and waiting patiently for me to get to them in my office) but at the end of the day it’s putting these words of wisdom into ACTION that will put a whistle in my work and a happy tune in my children’s ears.

And I think Snow White would wholeheartedly agree with that.

Do you find that your path is paved with good intentions? How do you pick yourself up after you falter along the way? What tips do you have for being a less shouty mama? As always I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments.

Linking up with Brilliant Blog Posts at Honest Mum, Share With Me at Let’s Talk Mommy, The List at Mums Days, Post Comment Love at Verily Victoria Vocalises, The Big Fat Link Up at The Dads Network


  1. Great photos – I am seriously jealous of that playroom. Thanks for linking up this honest post #bigfatlinky

  2. A lovely honest post. There are many paths to happiness and it’s not always easy to find the one, which will work for you. It looks like you’ve got lots of wise books to guide you along the way xx
    Joanna recently posted…The Great Blogs Series #1 – Rain or Shine Mamma

  3. Fab post lovely. I worry about the same things, those small loses of patience make up feel so guilty. We are raising fabulous kids and should remember that, despite the odd slip up. Thanks so much for linking up to #TheList x
    You Baby Me Mummy recently posted…Treworgey Cottages – The Perfect Family Holiday

  4. What a thoughtful article! And, of course, I love Snow White…is one of my favorite cartoons. Stopping by from Big Fat Linky!
    Sinziana recently posted…The Food of the Gods

  5. What *does* Snow White teach us? If you’re kind you get taken advantage of, if you’re beautiful other women will hate you and if you sleep too long some guy will come along and claim you for his own. Hmmm.
    You’re a real person, with all the pressure of real life going on. Your children are growing up healthy and well, despite some shouting. I’m not saying trying to be calmer and happier wont benefit everyone (you as well as your children), but please remember you’re human and allowed to make mistakes.
    Even Snow White ate that apple for goodness sake!
    Big love to you all.
    Lisa Savage recently posted…6 weeks on – our ASD journey

  6. You are such a busy woman at the moment with all your reading and habit changing. Just remember it takes time and your journey is about progress and not perfection. You are sowing those good seeds and you will reap the harvest in time. Mich x
    Michelle Twin Mum recently posted…

  7. Oh Michelle. I feel the same way sometimes. Bad days are almost expected as a mama. I think the important thing here that you’re trying. Putting forth that conscious effort is half the battle. And it may not seem much to you, but your children will soon see that effort and emulate it. Their mama TRIES her hardest to be the best for them. That’s all that matters. And it’s an important lesson for your children to see. Hope all is well. Have a fantastic week!
    Maria recently posted…

  8. We all have bad days, but I do think that as long as we move forward from them we’re on the right track. Hard to see that in the moment sometimes, but so important to remember. We’re learning as we go x
    Sara recently posted…Childhood: Great Granny

  9. As long as we keep trying to be better people and better the parents the results will come
    Jeremy recently posted…Daddy Tantrums

  10. We all have these moments, including me, and I’m so chilled, I often wonder if I’m in a coma. The main point here, is that we are trying to improve our outlook, and our lives for the better.

    All the more power to you!
    Dawn of the Dad recently posted…Plague Rages

  11. This is brilliant – I think we all have these moments. My approach is normally to try and laugh about it. I also make a point of constantly asking myself is it serious?If it is it might be worthy of a quick shout, if it isn’t then there is normally another way #sharethejoy
    Mummy Fever recently posted…Allergy awareness



  1. How to Flourish - begin each day with clear intentions - Bod for tea - […] have discovered so many wonderful books full of wisdom and inspiring words. But as I mentioned in this post …
  2. Share the Joy link up #16 - Bod for tea - […] week I’m sharing a post all about that Mama fail moment and how I’m moving forward by taking action and …

Leave a comment

Awards for Bod for tea


Post archives