This post is sponsored by Persil. It is our summary of a fabulous week outdoors in the sunshine 🙂

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is the best thing in the world. Strange statement, I know, for a post about good dirty clean fun outdoors, but bear with me. 15 years ago my regular night-time pattern was to sleep until 2am, wake for 4 hours, then drift off to sleep around 6, ready for the alarm at 7. Every single night. For more than 10 years. I was a wreck. I survived on coffee, and moaned about everything.

CBT changed all that, and now I sleep really well, every night. Honestly, it’s the best thing in the world! But here are some side-effects of CBT’s teachings, that I wasn’t expecting:

  • I used to fret about problems. I would wind myself up about a situation, panic over how it might resolve, and project ridiculous outcomes into the future, that I could quite easily see happening. I told myself bad things happened because I was an unlucky person. My glass was always half empty. Nowadays I see problems for what they are, daily occurrences that happen to everyone. Nowadays I’m an optimist.
  • I used to worry that if a bad thing could happen, it would happen. Nowadays I just get on with my life.
  • I used to hate the heat. Like many a Brit, I would moan about the cold and the rain, longing for summer. On it’s arrival, I would moan about the heat, the clammy sweatiness of it all, and insects inside my house. Nowadays I LOVE the hot weather!

Let me show you all of this through the examples of our week.

  • On Saturday afternoon we had to manage 2 conflicting parties. We were invited to a friend’s house for a BBQ; GG was invited to a soft-play center (remember, it was hot!) for a birthday party. Normally I would have worried over transport arrangements, who was drinking, would there be enough time after her party to attend ours? They concocted a water slide, with old banners for them to skid along. Would they get hurt? In my CBT’d guise I didn’t fret. Things worked out, the kids were sooooo  happy larking around in swimsuits until dark; a few scratched bellies from the banners, but they didn’t notice, they were having too much fun. I didn’t even think about mosquitos. I chilled out with my friends and my kids. I wasn’t even bothered by the muddy bikini bottoms that appeared in the wash the next day. And I didn’t panic when, slightly the worse for wine, I realised I’d left the light on and the window open in the bathroom, where the neighbourhood moths and daddy-long-legs were throwing a huge shindig 😉
  • Sunday was the hottest day of the year so far, and we were scheduled to attend the Magic Summer Live music festival. In a previous incarnation I would have been stressing about sunburn, crowds, losing the children, whether or not the kids would be bored, what about the queues for food, etc. In the event, I plastered everyone with suncream, congratulated myself on at least having decent legs, and stuck my shorts on. So I’m not 25 any more, but I look ok, and I’m going to have fun today!

"family music festival"Sure, the kids didn’t know most of the music, but when the Bug did his Victor Meldrew, I danced with him. When he moaned about sore feet, I sat him down with an ice-cream. When he complained of sweat, I chucked water at him. When there were no noodles (I was craving noodles) I ate shaved lamb and coriander salad. So did they. We sweated, but I didn’t pay any attention – I was having too much fun introducing my daughter to the delights of music festivals and the lyrics of Kim Wilde 🙂

  • Tuesday arrived, and with it a parcel from Persil. Reading between the lines, I knew the objective was to get dirty. Ordinarily I would be chastising my kids for tramping around the garden in socks and no shoes (why do kids do that??), but for today I let it go. Normally I would be taking control of tent erection, but today I left them to it, while I made them a proper Famous-Five-style picnic basket:

"good clean fun"

A sandwich pack each, sausage rolls, lemonade from our Soda Stream, marshmallows, and the Bug’s favourite Banana Fudge muffins. To be fair to them, they put up the tent (mostly) on their own, and bundled around inside with sleeping-bags, whistles and torches for a good hour before I was needed. At one point I overheard GG telling her brother off for reading after dark, and threatening “no sweets!” Can’t think where she got that one from. She may need CBT for her inner control freak when she’s older…

They didn’t disappoint on the good clean fun either!

Good clean fun

"good clean fun"

Now, I’ve never been one to stress about whites that are “whiter than white,” but since my daughter’s shoeless forays into the garden in her school socks, I confess to becoming a bit stereotypically house-wifey about grey sock syndrome. I was a bit cynical, if I’m honest, but I’d agreed to test the new Persil Small and Mighty liquid for Netmums, so I set about using the eraser ball on the grass stains. And do you know what? Look at this:

"good clean fun"

So back to that CBT. If you worry about everything, if you fret about your kids safety to the point where it spoils their (and your) fun, if you try too hard to keep them clean, I’d say give it a go. For your chance to win one of 40 camping sets, head over to the Netmums Persil page, where all you have to do is upload a picture of your kids being “mighty.” The mightier, the better – there’s always Persil’s Small and Mighty. Shame it can’t get rid of these too 😉

"good clean fun"

Disclosure: I was recompensed for this review. All editorial content is our own, and I’m seriously impressed with both CBT and Persil!

I’m linking up with Country Kids at Coombe Mill this week, where you’ll find lots of other families having fun outdoors.

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