You're just a boring old mum, said my son...

Boring old mum?! Not me. Well at least not all of the time... How about you?

sally crabtree"You're just a boring old mum, said my son..." is the chorus of Sally Crabtree's wonderful song curating words from our communal Mums' Poem (have you added yours yet?). If you need reminding that you're anything but boring today, watch it here.

Read on to see what we're up to this month, our best bits from last month, our next #somum Make Date, and how to come see us in London or New York!

What's up this month?

This months' theme is My Mum Story and we've got two possible ways for you to explore yours this month... 

THE FULL-ON ACTIVITY: 

Penny Alexander My Mum Story stillWe would love you to make and share your own My Mum Story film.

These powerful films tell mums' stories in just 10 photographs and around 20 seconds of voiceover for each image.

It's an incredibly stimulating way to explore your journey and we'd love you to have a go any time in October (and we'll take your story to New York with us if you do!). 

You can see My Mum Story film here and many more wonderful examples from inspiring honest flawed beautiful mothers from around the world. I share a few of the most recent ones below.

I really recommend taking time out to watch some of these. With tissues. And mum friends. And ideally, cake. Even more, I recommend making one.

THE QUICK(ISH) ACTIVITY: 

This month we're proudly making our mark as mums in another way too. On a bit of paper. With a pen. Or a crayon. Or pencil, charcoal, pastels, maybe just your finger-paints or a biro. We're not fussy. But we are going to draw. Yes, draw. No, I can't draw either. But we're still going to have a go.

We're teaming up with The Big Draw for our next Make Date on twitter on 9 October (8.30-10pm UK time - find world times here) to get us all drawing together.

The Big Draw are also giving us some goodies from their fabulous shop to give away, a great incentive to get drawing, doodling, and scribbling with us. 

Drawing helps us to get behind those photo album memories. What about those moments that we didn't photograph? Or those moments we remember differently from the camera? What was behind that smile, or just out of frame...?  

We're going to try to Draw Your Story: drawing a precious moment (good and bad) from our mothering journeys.

breastfeeding sadnessIn true Story of Mum spirit, I have of course already had a go at this too...

The final results (as you can see here): not very impressive.

The experience of drawing them: really rather wonderful.

There was something healing about getting into the memory of that dark night. And something beautiful about sitting in the dark listening to my sleeping daughter breathe and attempting to draw her dreams.

Have a go. You don't have to show us anything you draw (although if you do, we will of course be delighted, and will not judge you in ANY way for your inability to draw hands - as you can see, I simply didn't give my daughter any...) 

watch my children dreamJoin our #somum Make Date

We'll be bringing these two activities together, using some of the moving, funny, wise My Mum Story films as inspiration for our #somum Make Date. 

You can join in at any time here. Or join us on twitter to draw together. Here's all the info. 

As always, you don't have to get creative, you can just chat.

We would love to see you and your scribbles there!

What did we get up to last month? 

We had a fabulous Mama Mash-Up #somum Make Date on twitter, an emotional Mums' Make Date in Penzance (featuring the My Mum Story films below), and an inspiring Family Make Date.   

Danielle shared her experience of being a mother to a beautiful child with Cystic Fibrosis.

Kari talked about coming to motherhood later in life, balancing a freelance working life of travel with precious mummy time.

Hayley shared her journey through loss to parenting two daughters, one of whom has Downs' Syndrome - and her new-found life as a blogger and activist.

Helen's story captured her promise to run a marathon when her fifth pregnancy stablised after three miscarriages, and the fulfilment of that dream for 'the ones that got away'.

We also held our first ever 'live' mini Mamas' Retreat in 90 minutes (yes! we discovered you really can feel amazingly better together in just 90 minutes) and we're about to co-host our first BusinessMums Networking (Excuse to Eat Cake) with B-New on Wednesday...

We also had our virtual final exhibition round-up on BritMums - do check it out as there are some brilliant posts there. And me banging on about the importance of stories again :)

Last but not least, don't miss another ace guest post from Hannah Smith of Mama Bear With Me: read her funny and insightful guest post "I'm a mum and a... tank enthusiast".

We would love you to come and see us in London or New York!

Our exhibition is moving on from Penzance to The Photographers' Gallery in London for the next stop on our Story of Mum: Mums Making an Exhibition of Ourselves tour this month!

We would love you to come and join us on 18 and 19 October.

britmumsOn Friday 18 October, we'll be co-hosting a short reception with the fabulous BritMums from 6.30pm, and you can join our Mums' Make Date from 7pm to 9.30pm (book for this bit RIGHT NOW as there are limited places).

We'll have the wonderful Hollie McNish curating the mums' poem and performing some of her own work, and some wonderful mums sharing their My Mum Story films with us - Sue Atkins, Amy Beeson, Shelina Janmohamed, Lorna Hauff and Emma Murphy. 

You'll also have a chance to make Mama Mash-Ups, have your I'm a mum and a... photo taken by Pat Kelman, and make sure you become part of the exhibition before we head off to New York in December...!! 

On Saturday 19 October, we'll both be there all day and would love you to pop in and say hello. We're also hosting a drop-in Family Make Date for kids and carers alike from 2-4pm.

We're hoping the lovely Baobab Puppets will entertain the kids with puppet-making and story-telling for long enough that we can all have a cuppa and get creative.

We'll also have the lovely Caroline Smith taking your photo if you're up for it too.

And yes indeedy, in December, we're going to the Museum of Motherhood in New York! And we're very very excited to take all your stories with us.

You are so much more than 'just' a boring old mum. Hoping to see you on the computer or face to face very soon.

Much love, mama! 

Pippa and Penny