Sunrise | The Ordinary Moments

As parents we’ve been awake before sunrise more times than I could possibly count, but I can’t remember the last time I actually saw the sun rise. I have this foggy childhood memory of early morning trips to cook breakfast on the beach with my Nanny and Granddad, snuggled up on fold out chairs under big thick blankets and enjoying the peace and tranquillity of the sea before most people were out and about. There was something so exciting about it and it’s something that I’ve always had in the back of mind mind as a tradition to recreate with my own children one day. Quite why the idea decided to strike me on a Friday afternoon in January I’m not sure, but once I had the thought in my head it just wouldn’t go away. I wasn’t quite brave enough to attempt bacon and eggs on a camp stove this time, but watching the sunrise with a mug of something warm I could definitely manage. So that is how we ended up bundling three children in the car at 7.30am on Saturday morning with a flask of hot chocolate and a random selection of mugs chucked in my handbag, and making the short drive down to the beach.

On the way to making it out the door I was getting worried we were going to miss the sunrise completely. I didn’t realise how light it gets outside even before the sun has begun to emerge from over the horizon. So I was panicking we were going to be too late and hurrying everyone along, rushing to stuff feet into shoes and hats onto heads, little fingers into little gloves, put on three sets of jumpers, three sets of coats… it was frenzied and chaotic but that just added to the excitement.

We got to the beach and it was absolutely freezing but the sky looked beautiful and there was such a sense of stillness and calm, it really felt magical. I hastily poured the girls some hot chocolate to warm them up while Carl tried to keep Ernie warm but after about 10 minutes they had all had enough so we started to head back to the car where everyone could be a little bit warmer while we watched the sun start to peek out of the sea like a big red ball.

Mabel and Greta were amazed by the sun rising, it truly was beautiful, and I think they then finally understood why we were there so early in the morning, freezing our little bums off.

To be honest though, no one was as enamoured with the sunrise as me. I left that beach feeling so uplifted, so content, so happy. It put me in such a good mood for the whole day. I LOVED being up and out of the house before the sun, and I am not and have never been a morning person. In fact I loved it so much I think I’m going to make it a personal mission to see how many sunrises I can see this year.

I read something on Facebook today about unschooling and it was basically saying to live your life as if it is your last year with your child. Give them all the experiences that you would give them if it was your last winter with them, your last spring, last summer, last Autumn. And then do it again, year after year. I loved it because that’s exactly how I want to try to live, having as many adventures as possible, squeezing as many experiences as we can into our children’s childhood.

That’s the kind of childhood that I had, mostly because of my wonderful Nanny and Granddad, and because of them I can say with the greatest confidence that adventures aren’t just about holidays to far flung places or expensive theme parks (although they are fun too). Adventure can be found in the simplest of life’s pleasures… like getting up early to watch the sunrise.

We also made a little video of our quick early morning adventure if you fancied having a look…

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15 Comments

  1. January 22, 2017 / 9:10 am

    What a wonderful way of approaching life; not in the spoil them rotten sense but in not putting off simple pleasures that they would love now. We used to watch the sunrise on the beach as children – usually followed by a good fry up – that was my Mum’s favourite way to start the day, and this week we took the children up to the windmill hill to watch the sun set and it does have that same feeling of calm and space – just perfect! I’m glad your little ones enjoyed it – the start of their new tradition perhaps?!
    Carie @ Space for the Butterflies recently posted…Milestones like busesMy Profile

  2. January 22, 2017 / 10:09 am

    Oh we love catching the sunrise and sunset by the water, this time of year is simply the best for gorgeous skies. It really is one of the benefits of living on the south coast isn’t it? I saw these on IG, but popping over from #TheOrdinaryMoments
    Sherry recently posted…Happy Birthday {Ordinary Moments 21/1/17}My Profile

  3. January 22, 2017 / 4:08 pm

    This is wonderful Louise, something I’d definitely like to do with Rosalie, the simple things really are the best. The unschooling approach sounds very interesting (we plan to home ed Rosalie when she gets to school age) and definitely something I’d like to try. Beautiful photos of your girls xx
    Jess @ Picnics in the Rain recently posted…Raising curious kidsMy Profile

  4. January 22, 2017 / 5:45 pm

    Man I love everything about this post – the activity (wonderful) and the gorgeous pics and your gorgeous girlies names. I might put this on our bucket list this year x #ordinarymoments

  5. January 22, 2017 / 8:05 pm

    This is such a beautiful thing to do and share together – its going on my do list this year! The girls get up often way before sunrise so it should be achievable! Beautiful photos x

  6. January 22, 2017 / 10:10 pm

    This is such a beautiful post. I love that unschooling way of living and I try subconsciously to live like that. Your photos are stunning x
    Donna recently posted…Review: Aldi Ambiano Nutrient BlenderMy Profile

  7. January 22, 2017 / 10:17 pm

    I love this and love the unschooling idea. I love being out early with my toddler, although our 6am walks tend to be to the shop then grandparents x #theordinarymoments

  8. January 22, 2017 / 10:35 pm

    I love a sunrise/sunset and especially at a beach I remember watching it in France and it really does get to you doesn’t it? I also love to live the last season thing because life is for living and because truthfully you never really know what is around the corner and the fact that we do know that the next time they experience that season they will be a whole year older again.
    Laura @ Little Ladies Big World recently posted…Solo Parenting {The Ordinary Moments #3}My Profile

  9. January 26, 2017 / 5:37 pm

    I am not a morning person at all but I do love watching the sunrise, it is beautiful. I love watching sunset even more! My daughter is particularly fascinated by sunrise too 🙂 This is such a magical lovely thing to do and your pictures are beautiful! You have really captured the cold too; I love her adorable red nose and rosy cheeks on that close-up! Beautiful! Thank you for taking part in my linky #LivingLifeWild Katie x

    • Louise
      January 29, 2017 / 1:47 pm

      Thank you! I loved the sunrise so much, I think I love it even more than sunset. It’s the feeling of a new dawn, new possibilities, I don’t know why but it was quite exciting xx

  10. January 26, 2017 / 6:59 pm

    This is what we did a few weeks ago…but at -9!! Wrapped up in sleeping bags and blankets, I took preheated pain au chocolates down in tin foil! Too cold to get my fingers out to light a fire. It’s a bit easier here over in Sweden where the sun gets out of bed later, but still as spectacular. I’m sunrise/sunset obsessed here as the scenery is so unspoilt. I won’t lie though, I do look forward to enjoying them in warmer temperatures!!
    Sonia recently posted…Marshmallow Sandwiches.My Profile

    • Louise
      January 29, 2017 / 1:46 pm

      That sounds amazing but yes I can imagine the cold! I’m really looking forward to spring now xx

  11. January 29, 2017 / 3:04 pm

    What a FAB idea. That’s real memory making stuff. We will definitely be doing this at some point this year. I might wait until it’s in the + temperatures first though!!

  12. January 29, 2017 / 10:38 pm

    Oh this is wonderful. I do see quite a few sunrises at home, but really wanted to get out early and take photos of the sheep in a misty sunrise – usually I go past on my way to work but there’s nowhere to just pull in. There have been some spectacular sunrises this winter

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