5 Things I Love Doing Now I’m In My 30s

Age is a funny thing – as parents we get a bit obsessed with how old our kids are, and what they can or can’t do. (Just FYI, my daughter has just turned three, and she can count backwards from 10 to zero – actual genius*.)

And as grown ups, our age marks our stage in life too. My teens were all about finding my identity. I went through a bit of a stage of dressing in DMs, Pearl Jam t-shirts, maxi skirts and plaiting my hair at the front like Angel from Home & Away before I finally found my true teenage calling – Topshop clothes and an unhealthy obsession with Take That.

My 20s were all about finding my way in London. I was at the start of my media career, being invited to all sorts of exciting events (like the Brits and the Busted showcase party – the stuff legends are made of) and trying to work out where someone ‘like me’ socialised in London. I went clubbing in Fabric (too hot and clubby for me), I went to ‘celeb hangouts’ like Cherry Jam and Attica (too snooty and expensive for me) and ended up finding that normal pubs in Soho were the place to be, if you wanted to drink cheap wine, eat Mini Cheddars and have a gossip.

My 30s (which I’m currently four years into…) seem to be all about learning how to be part of a family, how to be a good mum. Learning what kind of mum I am. But it’s also about learning what the non-mum 30-something me is like. There are loads of things the 20-something me did that I don’t do any more. Like listen to Radio 1. Or drink a bottle of wine every night for a week. Or spend the whole of Sunday morning watching Hollyoaks. And there are lots of new things that 30-something me loves to do…

5 things I do now I'm 30

1. A nice wander around Wilko’s. Seriously, that place is amazing. We all mourned the loss of Woolworths, but really, we needn’t have because Wilkinson’s has it all. I like nothing better than a (child-free) mooch around the store. Today, for example, I popped in to buy some last minute party bags and bought some printer paper (£3 for 100 sheets), some poster paint (80p for a large bottle) and a set of baskets (y’know, for putting stuff in). I nearly bought some Hallowe’en goodies but figured that would be a bit too organised. It’s the kind of shop that reminds you of things you need to buy, which is just bloody helpful.

2. Having a nice store of birthday cards. As a mum, I only have enough room in my head for so many things every day. Birthdays often creep up on me, so it’s useful that since I hit my 30s, I’ve been a fan of a birthday card stash. At present, I’ve got a nice selection – some for boys, some for girls, 1 year old, 2 year old, even a couple of wedding cards, a Mother’s Day card and a Father’s Day card. Oh, and an entire box of M&S Christmas cards that I bought for 75p in the January sales. (Yep, I hate myself a little right now, too.)

3. Listening to Radio 2. I used to be a bit embarrassed about it, but now I embrace it. Chris Evans every morning, Steve Wright Sunday Love Songs, a bit of Elaine Page and her showtunes on a Sunday afternoon, and some Jo Whiley on a weekday evening. Oh and if I get a chance to hear Jeremy Vine on a weekday lunchtime, that’s a real treat. I’m 34, so I think I’m pretty much target listener for them. And I’d MUCH rather listen to the Manics and Michael Buble than Stooshe and Dizzee Rascal.

4. A Sunday visit to a garden centre. Apart from the fact that they’re great places for kids (one near us has a mini soft play area and loads of space to run around in) garden centres sell such useful stuff. Posh kitchen gadgets, cheap kids’ books, wellies, deckchairs, various goods that have kids’ names on them… oh and some things for your garden too. A bit like an out of town Wilko’s, I walk around garden centres thinking ‘Ooh! I need one of those!’ (ESPECIALLY when I pass one of those JML displays with a TV demo)

5. Sitting in a coffee shop… on my own. In my 20s, I would rather DIE than sit in a coffee shop on my own. ‘People will think I have no friends!’ But now, sitting on one of those big comfy armchairs, on my own, with a skinny latte and a muffin is nothing short of heaven. Is it a confidence thing? Or just an ‘appreciating time on my own’ thing? Perhaps a bit of both…

If you’re in your 30s, what do you like doing now that you didn’t before?

*joke

5 things I do in my 30s

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32 thoughts on “5 Things I Love Doing Now I’m In My 30s

  1. Great post, I was nodding my head throughout! I am now 38 (aaaah rapidly heading towards 40!!!) and now enjoy:
    - looking in estate agents windows
    - pottering about in antiques shops
    - watching Grand Designs and Alan Titchmarsh gardening programmes!
    - shopping for clothes in M&S (love the limited collection!)

    I now sound about 80 not 38!!
    Richmond Mummy recently posted…Review: Childs Farm Top-to-Toe Cleaning Kit for Kids. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

    • Yep – I LOVE M&S especially Limited Collection. And I definitely have a soft spot for watching the Titchmarsh. Nowt wrong with either!

  2. At 24, I’m found of basically all those things. Perhaps I’m old before my time? But sitting along in a coffee shop has been “my” thing since I was about 18- it’s the background noise, the losing track of time and feeling so content.

  3. Ha! I laughed reading this. I’m with you on all five but I still haven’t given up Hollyoaks even though I’m 37 now. My one to add to the list is that I now make serious purchase rather than throwaway ones – clothes, furniture, etc. – all to stand the test of time rather than change in a year’s time. Uch, sometimes I hate myself for being so sensible ;-)
    3yearsandhome recently posted…Im Viadukt – come take a look. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  4. So funny, and absolutely true. I’m embarrassed to say that my birthday card stash comes from Tiger (50p each) because I am cheap and don’t mind that they are weird. You’ve inspired me to finish my post on my identity crisis aka “Topshop v Boden”. thanks!
    Jen Corlew recently posted…#SilentSunday. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  5. Wilkos, The Manics, Michael Buble… A girl after my own heart!

    Personally, I love that I’ve got the perfect escuse to run a little serum through my hair and let it dry naturally, with a natural bounce because I’m a mum and don’t have the time or inclination to style it! Yay for my 30′s ;)
    Carol Cameleon recently posted…This time 4 years ago…. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  6. Agree with these, although I still enjoy a bit of Radio One! I find myself watching Countryfile and Coast and finding them interesting – these are the kind of shows that when my parents put them on I would groan and stomp off! I also love Watchdog! Yes, your 30′s are so Rock’n’roll!!

  7. yeah wilkos is such a well kept secret. i could spend all day in there!
    Other things i enjoy now i’m 32 (and a mum);
    going to bed at 9.30
    buying niche kitchen utensils (zesters rule!)
    staying in hotels instead of backpackers hostels
    deadheading the roses

    youth is so overrated
    ellen recently posted…Exiting the cave. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  8. God no, I’d never do ANY of these…ahem. Please add: an obsession with property programmes (and prices), sitting in a pub having a nice glass of white wine by myself (although I have only done this once when E was settling in at nursery it was amazing), loving kitchen gadgets, I’m sure there are far worse ones and I do them all!
    Gill Crawshaw recently posted…On feeling broody, breastfeeding, and future baby #2. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  9. This post made me smile; I LOVE this list and I wholeheartedly agree with them all, apart from the Wilko’s bit but thats only because we don’t have one near us! Ps. who knew thats what Steve Wright looked like?! x

  10. I love this post I hope you don’t mind if I share it on my blog?! I am right in the middle of writing a post about turning 30 and I categorically agree with each and every one of your ’5 Things I Love Doing Now I’m In My 30s’. Thanks again!

  11. Great list :)I love all those things too & I’m not even a mummy!

    Wilkinsons is definitely a worthy Woolies replacement…and a soy latte with a blueberry muffin watching the world go rushing by, bliss :)
    Lisa recently posted…Woof Wednesday: The Gallery. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  12. You promised me the Radio 2 thing wouldn’t hit me when I turned 30! I feel let down! Seriously though, I love a garden centre mooch. I also love a hot cup of tea in the garden before anyone else is up (unless it’s raining) – not something I’d have considered a luxury 10 years ago!
    Molly recently posted…Parenting: Talking to myself. Constantly.. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  13. HI I’ve just discovered your blog :) I’m also 34 and feel so much more comfortable in my skin since I turned 30. I think I finally understand what styles suit me and dress better than I did in my twenties. I too love a garden centre mooch, wandering round bargain basement shops and love a coffee shop (even better if it has vintage tea cups!) I enjoy buying a nice bottle of expensive beer or a couple of glasses of a nice wine to savour rather than to get wrecked and have a hangover from hell the next day. I’ve shifted from radio 1 to radio 6 and cant remember the last time I slept past 8am! which is no bad thing as I enjoy spending the full day with my family :) I’m really embracing my thirties. I feel a lot more confident overall.

  14. I love wilko’s, its a dangerous shop for me to be left alone in. But its always been like that since my mid 20s. I have a new found love for Radio 2 but I’m definitely not ready to give up on Hollyoaks just yet.
    Little Mans Mum recently posted…Nike Trainers Review. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

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