Mothering teenage boys is a puzzle.

I want to write today about being a mum to a teenage boy.

My first born was 15 a few weeks ago, and, I feel the same way I did on his first birthday. On his first birthday I cried, and held him all day. It was a multi layered cry, on one level I was relieved that we had barely survived the first year, he was growing out of the baby stage. I wept harder though, when I thought about how he wasn’t the baby anymore, that my arms would get lighter from here on out. I cried in celebration because it was our day, his birthday, and my birthing day.

This year on his 15th birthday I cried. I cried because our relationship is evolving and my arms and heart are aching for my little boy that always wanted my attention, that little boy love for his mumma. I would stand for hours watching him bowl a ball. Now he goes out into the yard on his own to practice cricket. For the little boy that would always yell out to me, just so he knew where I was at all times. For the little boy that would cuddle me just because he wanted to, now I have to place his arms around my neck. He is moving out into the world and doing things that he doesn’t need me for. He organised work experience with Queensland Cricket at Albion, which meant he had to catch two trains to get there and then walk to the fields. He was completely confident and excited to be doing this on his own. My husband and I took him the first two days and he was mortified. The third day, I sat drinking endless coffee, in my back yard staring at my phone waiting for him to call me; when he changed trains, when he arrived at Albion station, when he clocked on at work. I was more worried on that day than the day I sent him off to school. At school, the staff have to care about the students, keep them safe. Putting him on a public train, and off to work in the big wide world, where no one really cares, was scary. He was totally fine and completely nailed his work experience – the whole experience, not just the work part. But getting ready, arriving on time, being responsible.

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Date day. (I look impressed don’t I)

 

He also has a girlfriend who he wants to spend more and more time with. This is honest to god killing me. I want my little family with me at all times when I have the weekend off (which is not often). He is now wanting to go and watch her play sport and spend weekends with her. Last weekend they had a “date day”. He watched her play sport and then her family dropped them at a local beach town. My boy took his girl for lunch at a burger restaurant, splurged on ice cream, and they hung out on the beach. I actually had tears in my eyes talking to my husband about this situation. The conversations in our house are now revolving around not blowing allllllll of your money that you work for, on a girl. This conversation does not go down well. This also hurts my heart because I want to be supportive, but, am finding this teenage, first love situation stressful, and hard to navigate so that I don’t look like the bitchy mum.

The no secret rule in our house is one we have preached since we tied the knot. We always try to be open and honest in an age appropriate way with the boys. At the moment that includes lots of talk about how to treat a girl, how to be respectful. We have had the; having babies at your age will completely ruin your life conversation. We have been focussing a lot on talking to him about choices and the wrong ones will send you in a down ward spiral, how at this point in your life the world is your oyster. This was cemented last week when my boy and I had to meet at the school to decide his “pathway” through the next two years at school. My husband has been spending a lot of time with him, and his brother fishing in their little boat, surfing, riding skate boards, and mountain bikes, and four wheel driving, re-enforcing in his soul that we are always here for him, and that there is always opportunity for conversation when hanging out with dad. I feel a bit left out at the moment with all of the boy activity going on. There is a definite shifting, I feel like we are puzzle pieces that haven’t clicked into place yet, that we know we belong together, but just have to find our place. I do feel like I am grieving for the little boy days, when my husband and I were the only important people in his orbit. When the most important thing I was teaching him was how to brush his teeth or that a banana is a better choice than a chocolate.

As I sit here writing this my boy is on school survival camp. We are old pro’s at school camp, Montessori kids start going to camp in prep (prep camp is a one night sleep over at the school). This year is different again as I feel like this is a big test for him, with choices that he makes and how he behaves on camp. I am missing him a lot more than usual. And my advice to him when he got out of the car was

“Love you, have fun, learn lots, try and stay warm, don’t get any one pregnant.”

Him “OH MY GOD…MUM!!!”

Continue reading “Mothering teenage boys is a puzzle.”

Today, I write.

I have been in hibernation this winter, hence the radio silence on the blog. I am allergic to the cold and struggle to be motivated when the air is cold, the wind is blowing, and I have to be rugged up in multiple layers. No, really I am allergic to the cold season, my skin goes into meltdown the minute the weather changes. My skin starts out really dry, and then changes into an eczema type skin condition on my neck, boobs, and stomach. It is crazy itchy, and it doesn’t matter what oil I put on it or how much a fill my gut with good bacteria like kombucha, yoghurt, green vegetables, bone broth, turmeric. The only thing that makes it disappear is spring.

Sunday morning we were at the beach, my husband truly believes in his soul that the ocean fixes everything, he was convinced that the salt water would fix my skin, and made me go for a dip in the ocean, in winter. The water didn’t fix my skin, but it livened me up. It was cold and gave me goose bumps, had my teeth chattering, and my extremities purple, heart racing, but so refreshing and cleansing. My husband and two boys frolicked in the ocean with me after their morning of surfing in wetsuits, laughing at me in my summer bikini.20170723_111225

I will back track a bit and explain how my husband made me go for a swim in the ocean, in winter and made me write today.

I have a little project that I am in the planning stages of. Anyone that reads my blog, knows that I have a categorgy called #sistertribe, where I interview women and post the interviews and photos on the blog. Well I want to expand that. I want to Interview more women and be paid for it. I have found a platform called Patreon that will facilitate this project. I have been planning and making notes and making lists of women that I want to chat to, I have been setting goals and researching and researching. To sum up, I am procrastinating.

Sitting at the football on Saturday, I put my foot down – I actually stamped my foot like a two year old, and told my husband that I would be doing more writing, that I am going to make this project work and I want his support. He looked at me like I had three heads. See he doesn’t at all, nor has ever, understood why I write, or post to a blog or want to interview women and post their stories.

“Honestly babe, I just don’t get it, it makes no sense to me. Why do people give a shit, why on earth would someone pay money to read about someone else? Why do they want to read about other people’s business? You tell me you want to do this, just do it. You want to write and talk to women, just do it! Not once have I ever told you can’t have or do something. It doesn’t make sense to me, but so what. Just because we are married, doesn’t mean I am going to agree with you 100% of the time. If you enjoy something, do it. Do not, however, hide yourself away in your office when we are all home, we need you and want you with us. Prove to people like me, that don’t understand what you do, that you can make it successful. That you can prove people wrong.”

At this point I didn’t know if I want to punch him in the face or kiss it. He kissed me, patted my leg and went back to watching our boy play football.

On our way to the beach on Sunday morning, my husband asked me, who are the women that I have on my wish list to interview. I told him about a woman from Northern Wales that is on my wish list, Natasha Brooks (please, please click on her name, it will direct you to her film), she swims in the mountain lakes there. Yes in northern Wales, where there is snow and temperatures below freezing, she swims naked. I want to interview her and ask her why, and find out her story. I told all of this to my husband. So by the time he had finished surfing and I had been sun baking/ sleeping in the winter sun, he leaned over me, dripping freezing water on me and said come for a swim.

“No, I am not swimming in that ocean today!”

“Northern wales this is not babe, it’ll fix your skin.”

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“Fine”.

 

Sitting at dinner that night we were going over our day like we usually do.

“So how much writing did you get done, while the boys and I went four wheel driving.”

My dear husband took our boys out to a local four wheel drive track for 4 hours after we came home from the beach, he text me at one point and said “we will be a while – write, do your thing while we are gone”.

“I washed and ironed clothes, washed the floor, carted wood upstairs for the fire, started dinner, baked muffins.”

“Not helping your cause babe”.

So today I write.

 

Got my phone

8.05.17

 

Monday and the no phone experiment was meant to finish yesterday, I have sent the odd text but I didn’t use my phone today either.

I have an essay due in a couple of weeks for the art history and design unit I am studying. I have a few days off work, kids are at school, Scott is at work, so I got stuck in today and learnt all about 19th century Paris. Not just the art but the urban planning, feminism, the culture, the fashion, the alcohol, drugs and prostitutes. I didn’t want to research the well-known artists, I wanted to find some interesting creatives. My research didn’t really go as planned but I ended up with Marie Bracquemond, Jean Béraud, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and I love them all for different reasons, they are what I was looking for. I got sucked into the rabbit hole that is the internet. I started on the university library website and found a few articles that lead to a few more, and then I was reading websites and blog posts and then went back to the library articles.

Before I knew it the clock said 2.15pm, I forgot lunch and my coffee was cold after sitting on my desk from 8.30am when I walked in to the kitchen to brew it post school drop off. My phone was still in my handbag, on the back seat of my car parked in my garage, so another day went by without my smart phone. No phone could prove a little dangerous socially and mentally for me. I love the no contact too much, and would become a recluse. I know this about myself already, I am very well known for not answering the phone and can be a shocker for not replying to text messages. I am not being rude, I just forget, or at that moment too hard to talk. I didn’t think that I would find it so easy to cut myself off, however, my life seems to be on the phone. It has all the phone numbers of the people that I love and need in my life – before mobile phones I knew everyone’s home phone number by heart – not anymore. The phone holds my roster for work – I used to carry a diary. The phone holds my banking app – I used to do banking from desktop at home. My phone holds all my photos – I have cupboards and boxes full of printed photos from before mobile phones. I can catch up on study on my phone, the high school app is on my phone, I have kindle on my phone and can read a book, I can even write a blog post on the WordPress app, Google maps is my absolute best friend, I love how she can tell me how long to get it will take me to get where I need to go – no more upside down refedex or listening to an inaccurate traffic report.  Overall the experiment was good for me to shut off for a few days focus on my family and friends, and not be looking at the endless list of apps, social media and other features on my phone. It does seem though, it is an evil necessity.

 

Moody Sunday.

07.05.17

After my blog writing last night, there was a phone call on Scott’s phone – because I still didn’t have a phone. That J was throwing up at Mum’s place. He has been incredibly stressed and cranky lately and this is how he handles stress. By throwing up. He has been like this since he was a little boy and the thought of Santa, the Easter bunny and the tooth fairy would stress him out. He would throw up the week before any of these events (not the tooth fairy obviously). It was disgusting and traumatising for all of us. The year we told them that all of the gift givers are fake he didn’t throw up. Hence making me feel like a shit mother for putting him through so much stress and vomit for so long. He also didn’t talk to me for a couple of days for lying to him about Santa etc. Anyway he is stressed at the moment, was throwing up at mum’s, I had no phone and felt awful that I wasn’t there holding his hair back (so to speak). I spoke to mum, T and J on Scott’s phone Mum was fine and had it under control and knew it was stress, T was screaming in the background about how disgusting it was and J was moaning. I didn’t sleep all night after telling Mum I would come and get them and she replied – don’t be silly, he is fine.

I had to get up at 4.45am to get ready to go to work, Scott had already gone to work and I woke up in a mood. No sleep, wanted to see my kid and really no desire to go to work. Once there I snuck in the backdoor, after texting mum to find out about J- he was sleeping. As I already knew my allocation for the day I was relieved where I was in the department– at the back where I didn’t have to have direct contact with most people and could work on my own. My mood wasn’t great to be dealing with hundreds of people that day. Typical that I couldn’t face people that day, because I was rostered on with some of my favourite work friends and I just couldn’t do the rounds and chat. I sat at my desk and got through the day without offending anyone. I even lied to Scott about what time I had lunch, I didn’t want to have lunch with him and his mates, so I sat in the sun and ate my pork sandwich, with hospital coffee, no phone and read the Sunday paper. I had arranged to meet my bestie at her place after work and I was tired and cranky and was worried about the hour drive home afterwards.

I drove to West End in my mood. My bestie and I had went to the Montague Hotel at the end of her street, she shouted me a champagne and we chatted at a table for an hour and a half, the time flew and it felt like we had only talked for five minutes. I drove home feeling so much better for seeing my friend.

 

 

 

No photo for this one, I wasn’t using my phone and wasn’t in the mood.

Still no phone.

06.05.17

Saturday morning and still no phone. AND I am loving it. I had to be a little more organised this morning than I usually am, but that’s not a bad thing. T had football at 12.20pm but Scott left the house with the boys at 9.30am, they wanted to go to Bunnings and then watch a couple of football games before T had has game. I was not leaving home at 9.30am, so had to make sure that T had text all the grandmothers to make sure they knew what time and where to meet us at the football and make sure he had all of his gear and had to make sure I knew where to meet them at the grounds where there are 4 football fields.  This no phone experiment is also saving us money, I went to text Scott when he was at Bunnings to grab a couple of things – but no phone. I thought about it and I really didn’t need the things that I was going to ask him to buy. And he apparently forgot I had no phone and sent me a text while grocery shopping asking for 8 pork chops. What the hell do we need 8 pork chops for!!! Glad I didn’t get that time wasting text message.

When we had all met up at the football to watch T, I was fascinated and a bit disturbed as I sat in the sun and people watched. EVERYONE was on their phones, I was also embarrassed to realise that I am also one of those mums. While waiting for a game I usually do pull out my phone and check social media or call or text someone. I was watching the kids as they were warming up and observed the amount of times they look at their parents – and the parents are watching their smart phone. No photos of T at the game, no phone and I forgot my camera. His team lost but he had good fun, got a fat lip, strapped fingers and tag marks all the way from the top of his thigh to his knee.

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This is why I didn’t want him to play football.

 

 

The boys had to stay at mums over night as Scott and I both work tomorrow morning. We dropped them off after dinner and about 30004238053023 kisses from me and goodnight and have a good day tomorrow. See I always text them goodnight and good morning, but no phone. Off to bed.

No phone

5th May 2017

 

I turned off my phone last night. I had a mixed response from the 8 people that I told. I text Mum, Dad, my sister and my best friend. I told Scott and the boys.

Scott said I won’t last until Sunday

Dad text me back “ok, love”.

My best friend sent a text within 2.5 seconds of me telling her I would not have a phone until Sunday. Why? Ok?

My sister: Why? Is everything ok? Enjoy the peace and quiet.

Scott and T went fishing this morning at 4.00am. One undersized dart was caught in the 3.5 hours, but they had a great time together.

J asked for the day off school as it was cross country, he was complaining about it and that he hates to run. When I told him that he could have the day off, only if he went fishing at 4.00am and then went to the art gallery with me at 10.00am, he had his school uniform on in record time. His brother, however, jumped at the chance to have the day off. My first thought was shit – I have to find the email address to let the school know. Our school seems to have gone digital – if that’s a thing. We now need to email when our kid has a day off, it’s annoying. Why can I just ring the office! (Which I suppose worked in my favour today as I don’t have a phone)

T and I went to the art gallery after dropping J at school. We sat for an hour and listened to the artist speak about his contribution to the installation at The Hub at Caboolture Regional Art Gallery. He spoke of the breast plate that he created and the story of his nanna that inspired it. The breast plate was made from lead, it is heavy, toxic to the nervous system and it’s cold. The other element to the piece was old fencing wire to represent his nanna’s living conditions as a young child. (read the post here)

I took my camera with me and asked permission to take some photos, it was awkward walking around with a digital camera instead of my phone. We had errands to run after the gallery and headed to the local shopping centre. I wanted to print some photos for my sister and frame them for her birthday, we were having an afternoon tea for her special day – I hadn’t wished her happy birthday yet, no phone. We got to the shop and I couldn’t print the photo of her gorgeous girls because – no phone, the photo that I wanted was tucked away on my phone in my cupboard. So we had to think so something else for her birthday, while at the shopping centre I had to get my watch battery replaced as I usually use my phone to tell the time, I tried to call my husband to find out what he wanted for dinner and I also tried to check my account balance, again no phone.

We had afternoon tea with my family celebrating my sister’s birthday and I am usually the one snapping pictures but – no phone. My family couldn’t get over how weird it was that I was not using my phone, apparently there was a back and forth texting session the night before when I had told everyone I was going phone free for a couple of days, between my mum and sisters who were concerned about me and why I would want to have no phone. I think they all think I am mad.

 

( you will notice that this has taken me a couple of days to publish – keep reading my future posts to find out why)

Help a mother out.

I know the word “tribe” is a popular term at the moment and being bashed to death. I’m 14.10 years into the raising of our boys and have always drawn on advice from my mum, my sisters, my hubby’s family, friends, teachers and principals, other mothers. It’s become very apparent over the last few days or even weeks really with the rising of the boys that I need this tribe.

Families need a clan in their lives. It’s not just when they’re babies and you know you’re tired and you need someone to hold the baby while you shower or pee, no mothers with teenagers need someone too. There’s my mum who has a subtle way of chatting or giving advice, you know she rubs their hand or I’ll see her occasionally give a cuddle and she’ll whisper something in their ear and it might not be a full on lecture or a rant but might be just a few words that really stick. The boys are comfortable in opening up to her a lot. They will tell her things that don’t tell me.  My Dad, he’s a quiet man, he doesn’t say much but has strong opinions, in saying that the boys respect him immensely and a happy to have a chat to him about anything.

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My boys loving my dad.

 

My sister posted my first born son a letter that was about life and how at 14 you don’t need to know everything, you are not expected to know exactly what you want to do in your life. Just like your Mum at 37 doesn’t know what she wants to do, but attitude is everything and to try, take every opportunity and make the most of it. For me at the moment, the letter from my sister meant everything. I balled my eyes out when I read it a few days after my son received it and asked me to read it when he was at school. We went to holiday with her, on her family property on the school holidays, and my eldest was lumped with the dishes of 11 people one night (he had other help but he kept being ridiculous, so he was left with about a quarter). He refused to stop being silly and do the job, I went and stood in the kitchen and he got worse. My brother in law walked in, stood at the bench and flicked through his phone, sending me outside to have a wine and watch the sun set with my mum, sister and cousin. The dishes were done perfectly in record time and not a single complaint. My eldest worships at my brother in law’s feet and would never want to disappoint him. My youngest sister and her family have the same comfortable relationship with my boys they will talk to them about everything. We have always lived by a “no secrets in this family” policy, the boys are comfortable sharing everything with my sisters and parents.

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My brother in law teaching the city kids about the bush.

 

I was driving to school a few weeks ago and my eldest boy had a history exam, I was on the phone to my best friend and she was offering him words of wisdom for his exam. Remember dates, places, and names. It was a small conversation but for me at the moment those small moments have a huge effect.

Recently my cousin has come back into my life and even though the boys haven’t seen her in years they are comfortable with her and feel comfortable chatting to her and asking advice.

It’s not even just in raising kids you need a tribe to bounce ideas off. Some of my most joyous moments are sitting having a coffee with a friend or my mum and my sister and talking about what’s going on, what they have to say and how that can change my mind set or how I look at a situation.

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Making memories as a family.

 

I refuse to let my family get bogged down in screens and social media – that actually does nothing for you socially. We need a lot of people in our lives that have deep connections with. That are respected and we are accountable to and have a deep love for. You can have lots of people in your life, but they might not mean anything, but I think that it’s important for kids to know that they don’t have to just only tell their parents everything. I want them to know if they need to have a chat to someone else, they have family (some who are not blood) to share with.

I read an article and it was 15 ways to help a new mother and I’ve been thinking about writing a blog post for 15 ways of helping mothers with teenagers because it’s not just mother’s with newborn babies that need help. However, I hate lists and glaze over at reading them if it’s too long. So here is my top 5 ways to help a mother of teenagers out.

 

  1. Suggest meeting for coffee. (Depending on the day this could progress to wine and escalate to tequila.)
  2. Don’t talk about the kids, there are billions of subjects to talk about. When a mum with teenage kids is having to deal with teenager hormones, attitude and opinions at home. Find something else to talk about when you see her or chat on the phone. Don’t mention the kids, give her a break.

 

  1. If she needs to talk about it, let her vent, let her get it all out, rant, rave. If you have useful advice share it otherwise, sit and listen. (Perhaps pass her another glass of wine.)

 

  1. Take her out. If she has teenagers she is running around after them, with sport, or work, 1 million other commitments. Take her out and do something that makes her heart happy. She will then come home refreshed and energised to love her kids.

 

  1. Don’t talk to mum at all, build up a relationship with the kid. If you are close enough to the family reach out to the kid. Send them a text saying Hi. If you are visiting sit and have a conversation with the kid.

Just mow the lawn.

I read an article this morning while on my third cup of coffee. I worked yesterday afternoon, got home at midnight and couldn’t sleep. So feel as though I was on the wines last night. My reaction to this article could be merely because I am tired and cranky.

As I started reading it, my initial thought was “good on you!”, the longer the article went the more I thought of for fuck sake woman. The article was about a woman that mow’s her own lawn.

I hope you understand that I am not mowing the lawn because someone told me to. I am not mowing because it’s my job. I mow because I am quietly making a statement.”

If you own a house, with a lawn, then it is your responsibility to keep your little piece of earth tidy and well maintained. It doesn’t matter if you are male or female.

“Mowing the lawn is, in a way, my silent protest against patriarchy—which is still alive and well no matter how many people tell you that women and men have equal rights. We are still fighting an uphill battle.”

Can everyday tasks not just be that and not a protest? I have chopped wood, I have changed a flat tyre in the middle of nowhere, on the side of a dirt road in 40 degree heat with my 30 week pregnant sister, I have fixed a broken pipe in the laundry, and I have mowed the lawn, and pitched a tent. I watched my mother, a single mother, do lots of “men’s work”. Mow the lawn, move furniture. I have talked to my sister on the phone while she was driving a bull dozer, she musters cattle, fights bush fires or builds farm fences.

“I hope the other younger girls in our neighborhood see me mowing the lawn and remember the image of a strong woman, a strong working mother, who has the power to decide which way the stripes go. I hope they see a strong woman sweating, not wearing any make-up, enjoying the satisfaction of hard work. I hope they all see me—a woman doing “men’s work” without asking for permission.”

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My hubby loves to cook dinner while I sit on the bench with a wine.

 

None of the above was done for recognition, or to show off to the neighborhood children and we certainly don’t ask for permission. All of the above jobs are just that. Everyday jobs that need to be done as part of life. When I am cold I chop wood, flat tyre change it, long grass mow it, broken pipe fix it. Our father didn’t let any of his girls apply for a drivers license before we knew how to; check the oil and water in the car, change tyres, replace wiper blades and get fuel. As young girls, we unloaded trucks full of hay, we were expected to help out in the yard, there was no “men’s work”. I say to my two all the time that if you live in this home you contribute, doesn’t matter the task just do it, and we all help. My boys wash the dishes every night, they help in the kitchen, and they know how to iron a shirt and make their bed properly. They also carry the grocery bags for me, pick flowers and arrange them in a vase. They know how to make a cup of tea as well as they know how to change the chain on a push bike.

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My two boys pick me flowers and arrange them in a vase.

Happy Monday

Hi.

Do you know what I am doing today?? EVERYTHING. I have done the school run, grocery shopped – I deliberated between the $1.99 avos that were ripe and the bag for $4.99 that were hard as rocks as long as I possibly could. I shopped at the local crystal shop for a smudge stick, came home and cleansed my house – so now every room in the house smells as though I have had a session of smoking weed.  I cooked up a huge brekky for my husband and I that lead to me cleaning the whole kitchen, I have washed all the clothes I could find, towels, sheets and doona covers, I have vacuumed, weeded one of my gardens. I have sat with two cups of coffee and watched my husband absolutely lose his mind over a bolt on the ride on mower. I have had a nanna nap. AND I am writing again after a break, from baring my life and soul to all. Busy day hey!

All this spring cleaning is not because I am bored or because it is the first day of my annual leave. No, it’s because I have an online art history exam to do and I am petrified. I am being tested on Greek, Indian, Chinese / Japanese art and philosophy. Last time I did an exam if was for the subject “defining women” – I earnt a HD for that subject, however, when I sat down in front of the computer screen and clicked the begin button – I looked at those questions and thought I must have been given the wrong exam because not a single question seemed at all similar to what I had been learning. My brain completely shut down, my heart was pounding out of my chest and I was freaking out.

Hence my OCD cleaning binge this am, this post is the closest I have let myself get to the computer.

 

Two hours, an exam, a school run and afternoon tea later.

 

The exam took me less than an hour and I got 95/100.

Post 100

Post 100

I made it…………………………….100 posts. What a relief that is over. I am glad I did the 100 posts but feel as though an invisible weight has been lifted now the 100 posts are done. Thanks to everyone that has read and supported my writing, I love and appreciate you and the time that you spent reading. I wasn’t sure how I was going to end my 100 posts but I want to tell you about an experience I had yesterday.

My husband’s phone blared its annoying alarm through our camper trailer at 4.20am. I rolled over and buried myself in the blankets and said “not today”.

“Yep, come on you wanted to do this, up you get.”

It was dark and the usually busy streets of Byron Bay were deserted. Street lights were on and neon lights were lit above the motels throughout town. We made our way up the hill, commenting on the amount of people running at this early hour, up such a steep hill. We parked the car at the closest car park and walked up the hill. It was blowing a gale, I was carrying my camera and phone and was rugged up in jeans and jumper.

We were just about at the top and I wanted to take a photo of the lighthouse in the dark with my new camera. I turned it on and click not working. Shit. One main reason I wanted to come up here was to get a photo of that. I was so annoyed with myself, I kept walking but was ranting about how it could have a flat battery and disappointed that I would have to take photos with my phone. We reached the top, after watching one of the runners that I had commented on while we drove up the hill, pass us on her way back down the hill. We sat down in a little alcove of the lighthouse out of the wind and watched the sky. I started playing with my camera, because I was still baffled and annoyed at how it could have a flat battery. I looked up and the sky had changed colour. I handed my husband my camera and went to the fence surrounding the light house and took a photo with my phone. As I sat down the light from my phone lit up my camera. My husband pointed out to me that I had in the dark put the camera on the wrong setting that is why it wasn’t taking photos. I was relieved and got up and started clicking away at the first light of the day. I sat in the arms of my husband, my back to his chest and watched the sky change colour again and again. I felt so blessed to be the only ones on the most eastern point of Australia, leaning up against an icon of the Country that was built 115 years ago to guide ships and protect the shore. As the sun started to rise, the crowds at the lighthouse started to rise. At one point my husband said to me “you better go and grab a spot at the fence if you want to see it”. I stood against the white wood and metal fence, with my husband at my back, listening to people from all over the world chatting to each other, I watched them taking selfies and posting to social media. Now don’t get me wrong I posted my pictures last night to social media but at the time it didn’t feel right. I am not particularly religious, I do like to go to Christmas Eve mass, but that’s about it. But with my feet firmly planted on the ground, standing in silence and watching such a colourful and majestic sight as the rising of the sun, for me sent goose bumps over my skin, my heart felt so much love and I had tears on my cheeks. It felt like more than a new day, it felt like a new beginning, a fresh start.

Post 98

Post 98.

“Oh your boy’s are so independent, I was watching you set up your site yesterday and was envious of you and your hubby. The boy’s jumped out of your car and went and found their friends and you two laughed and worked together putting together your camp site.” This was said to me by the lady across the road from our site that I met last year. Her and her husband have been travelling the east coast of Australia with their three year old in a van and a caravan. No more to be said really, the poor love has a threenager, who is absolutely gorgeous but is an unholy terror,  living in a caravan. That is why she was feeling envious.

The boys did run and find their friends, but once they came back to ask for food they were advised that they should set up their tent before dark. One said no he wanted to hang out with mates, the other one started unpacking the tent because he wasn’t doing it in the dark.

They have been given a little more freedom this year, they have hang out on the beach with friends but must get us if they want to go in the water. They were allowed to walk to the tea tree creek. Boy one learnt a hard lesson, he was showing off and tried a trick that didn’t work and landed wrong and hurt his ribs and abdo muscles.

“I am making sandwiches and smoothies for lunch.” I had two responses of cool thanks and one of “No thanks I am going for a walk.” Dishes done, sitting reading a book I hear from down the street coming towards me.

“Mum I am starving can you make me lunch?”

“No, I made lunch, you didn’t want it, you can make or cook something”

“What!!! I don’t cook!”

So we had a cooking lesson, I sat and watched and directed and he cooked. He lit the gas burner, collected all the ingredients for macaroni cheese. And cooked his own lunch.

They were told they could bring $10 for the lolly shop and that was it, they had to look after the money and spend it wisely. First day one of them goes to the shop, thinking he knows best and loses $5.00 out the bottom of the pocket in his shorts because he didn’t want to use his wallet.

They have both been responsible with checking in and asking if they are able to leave the park for the beach or the headland. Last night they asked if they could stay out until 9.00pm, to hang with friends at another camp site. We said yes but had to definitely be home by 9.00pm. One of them came home at 8.58pm then other 9.31pm. The one that was late doesn’t get to go out tonight.

Lots and lots of lessons being learnt these holidays.

Post 97

Post 97

We are on holidays. We are at the beach camping. We are living in a camper trailer with an outside kitchen. The toilet and shower block is across the road and a hill from our site, the beach is four tent sites down our little street and across the roundabout, the bush walking track is the same way as the beach but swing a right up the hill once you go over the roundabout and there is a path that leads over the headland. The office/lolly and ice cream shop is next to the bush walking track. The park is at our back door and can see the picnic tables through the trees when we sit at our dining table. The park is small enough that the boys can wonder, but large enough that I don’t feel like I am sharing someone’s tent with them.

I love this time of year for us, we relax and this is our happy place. For a while now I have felt restless and wanted to travel abroad. I have wanted to see other places and cultures. I had a conversation with an 85 year old lady that was holidaying in a caravan next to us. She was telling me that she had been coming here for 50 years. This was where her and her husband honeymooned, how they drove down a dirt track and camped in a tent. That there was one shower for women and one for men, and she hated the line-up. She told me how her 3 daughters grew up here on school holidays and her 11 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild are doing the same. She told me how they book out 5 camp sites over Easter for 10 days and the whole family holiday together, everyone cooks, surfs, fishes, walks together. There are people coming and going all day, every day. She told me how her and her husband struggled to put their girls through school, they had hard times and good. There has been sickness, arguments, weddings, and births. But they always holiday together at Easter and Christmas school holidays the couple are here for three weeks on the same sight they have booked for 30 years. She told me that last weekend the majority of the family showed up. This wasn’t organised she said everyone wanted to check on the couple. She said she sat at the plastic fold out table with her daughters and a granddaughter eating fresh fish caught by her husband and she told me how grateful she was to have a beautiful family.

I cried, she rubbed my hand and said you will have the same darling.

Post 96

Post 96

For this post I flicked through the dictionary and the word that came up for me was “Uncomfortable” – adjective

  • Causing or feeling slight pain or physical discomfort.
  • Causing or feeling unease or awkwardness.

I was a bit miffed actually that this was the word that appeared to me. I was hoping for a word that I had never heard of. Something intelligent, or a word that sounded lovely or something with deep meaning. So I sat with the word rattling around in my head.

Then I got to thinking about the meaning and how I had experienced some unease and awkwardness over the last few days.

In post 94 I wrote about a road trip that I had done with my little family. We drove 566 kilometres to collect my first born. He had been holidaying with my dad for the first week of his school holidays. I was agitated and a little cranky the whole drive out. See it is the first time that I have slept in the same house as my Dad and his partner since he left our family when I was 14. We have had dinner and lunch a couple of times and I never find it a pleasant experience. When we finally arrived at my dad’s place he was ecstatic to see us. I was glad to see him but extremely uncomfortable. Thankfully there are hot springs in the town at the aquatic centre so after a quick hello and grabbing my kid we fled to the water. The look on dads face told me that he was a bit hurt that I was running away so quickly. We went to the local Christmas carols and I honestly just couldn’t be myself. I kept comparing everything that was happening to when I was a child. I don’t remember him once taking us to anything remotely like carols. I could feel the resentment like a boulder in my chest, and I knew at the time my face and mannerisms weren’t polite. I struggled to engage in conversation with anyone, aside from my rock of a husband who could see how much I was struggling. Dad introduced us to his friends, and I smiled and nodded as politely as I could and discreetly left the conversation. It sounds so immature to be like this as a 37 year old woman, I just couldn’t stop the chatter that was in my head about that family driven childhood that I had wished for and only now being on the receiving end of it with my father and me as a wife and mother. The next morning after a sleepless night, I crept around in the dark, getting showered and packing my families belongings. I saw the surprise on my dad’s face that we were preparing to leave before 6.00am. These encounters with my dad and his partner that he left our family for, makes me lose my voice. I can talk for hours on the phone with my dad, but put me at a breakfast table with them and I may as well me choking on the food for the amount of ability I have in forming sentences. By the time we climbed in the car I was feeling sad for my dad. I knew he wanted more from me on this trip – I just couldn’t connect and be the daughter that he wanted over those couple of days. I was in a foul mood the whole seven hours home with unanswered questions running rampant.

This experience was followed two days later by another experience that caused unease and awkwardness. It was a job interview, I was interviewing to keep the job that I currently work in. I am great at my job (way to toot my own horn), I have 15 years experience doing the job. Yes I left it for a while but was still in the same type of job in the same field. I went into the interview with a dry mouth and a pounding heart. After I met the three women on the panel that I had never seen before and the chair of the interview asked the first question. All knowledge of my job evaporated from my brain. My actual thought was have I even done this job before. I took a deep breath and started rambling, I was pulling out words and examples from everywhere. At one point I think that I completely was off track but just kept using key words like team, experience, ethics, confidentiality, infection control, work place health and safety. This awkwardness went on for the five questions that was the whole interview and about half an hour. At the end, one of the ladies on the panel said “ok, you can breathe now”. I walked out feeling uneasy and like such a failure, and so pissed off. Annoyed with myself for not going into that office and being completely confident in the interview for a job that I know backwards. And pissed off with the whole situation. It pisses me off that it will be decided by someone that has never done my job – if I am capable of it and they are happy to give me a permanent position, that they get to decide if I get to keep my job so that I can put my kids through school. I was frustrated with myself on the drive home that I hadn’t made better choices and made myself a bit more uncomfortable and got out of my comfort zone so that I wouldn’t be in this position.  That perhaps I could’ve spent my precious time on an endeavour of my own, where I get to decide what is right for me and my family.

As I thought more about the word uncomfortable, the more that I realised that the more unease and awkward I feel the more I grow and change. The more I want to grow and change so that the unease and awkwardness at that moment is replaced and I can move onto more unease and awkward situations. Sounds uncomfortable doesn’t it.

Post 95

Post 95.

I mentioned in my last post that I am an introvert, however I have done some research and I am actually an ambivert.

a person who has a balance of extrovert and introvert features in their personality.

A couple of weeks ago I went out for dinner with some mums from school. There was 8 of us and I chatted and laughed and would’ve stayed out longer, if I didn’t have to take kids to cricket at 7.00am the next morning. At 7.00am the next morning I sat on my fold out camp chair under a tree and watched my boy play cricket, this was after I had said a quick hello to the team parents and paid the weekly fee for the end of year party.

The difference is the mums that I went to dinner with I have got to know over a long period of time. I have slowly and at my own comfortable pace got to know them and love them. The lady that I talk about in my blog all the time as my bestie, literally had to force herself on me to actually get me to open up and chat to her. I am glad she persisted otherwise I wouldn’t have my lovely friend.

The mums in the cricket team I have only met this season and am not comfortable just inserting myself in their conversation.

See once I get to know people, I am very extroverted and happy to hold a conversation and hang out. My core group of family and friends, I absolutely love to death. I find stimulating, deep and meaning conversation one of life’s biggest joys. I do however like to spend time on my own, and find it draining and stressful if I have a particularly busy week with social engagements. I get nervous and anxious meeting new people or people that I haven’t seen for a while. If I am going to a party or event where I don’t know many people, I always want to cancel. I don’t though. Part of the reason that I started this blog was to try and open myself up a bit more. The #sistertribe posts that are on the blog, are another way of me being a bit more extroverted. I find them extremely stressful, the interview and the writing but also rewarding.

 

I found a few other characteristics of an ambivert below:

  1. When you’re out in the world, you’re probably not going to be starting conversations with strangers.
  2. When a topic of interest comes up in conversation, you’re more than happy to talk in great detail about it. But as soon as that’s done, you’ll happily sit listening to the conversation without saying another word.
  3. Spending too much time with other people can be exhausting.
  4. Your calm, controlled professional self feels like a very different person to the one your friends see.
  5. Small talk is something that annoys you, because while you can do it, there are instances when it feels a bit insincere.
  6. Some weekends, you just need to spend some time hanging out on your own. And some of the best weekends of your life have been when you didn’t go home for three days.
  7. You’re known to be quite intuitive and good at picking up signals that other people can miss.
  8. Often, you just find yourself observing what’s happening around you.

Post 94

Post 94

We have just walked in the door from a two day road trip to pick up boy 1. He went to stay with my dad in Western Queensland for his first week of school holidays. The trip was about 7 hours travelling. The roads are long, the weather is hot, hot 43 degrees hot, my legs got sunburnt in the car and I was still sweating even though we had the air-con blasting. We saw more road trains on the road, than cars and the land looked as though it would self-combust. We drank 2 litres of water each on the way out, we stopped for a picnic because I refused to buy take-away and then sit in the car and feel bloated and sick, we stopped for lamingtons that are supposed to be famous for the area. I found them two big and a bit dry. We stopped in one of the major towns along the way and visited my sister and niece while they waited for their car to have a service. We walked to the pub on the corner on a melting road, the newly renovated pub had the air-con set to the perfect temperature and an Elderberry gin spritzer went down easily.

We got to my dad’s and my son nearly bowled me over with enthusiasm that I hadn’t seen in him for a long time. He wanted to spend some time with just his father and I for a while. We went to the Great Artesian Spa, and had a soak in the thermal mineralised artesian waters. We were the only ones in the aquatic centre and after getting into the pool, we knew why. It was as hot in the water as out of the water. However we paid $24 for the 3 of us to get in, so we were getting our money’s worth. We switched between the hot pool and the cooler pool, the first few minutes that we floated around in the water was actually relaxing to float in after a hot 7 hour drive. Until road trains full of cattle heading into the store sales in the next town started flying down the street directly past the pool.

After this we headed back to my dad’s place, a fair bit later than we said we would be. He wanted to take the boys to Christmas in the park. Which was as we found out; a sausage sizzle, raffle, bar, and school kids singing Christmas carols. Nice for the town folk, who being country people are extremely friendly, welcoming and will happily chat to a city slicker. But not something that we would go to where we live. I sat and listened to the carols with my husband on a park bench, slowing sipping a beer and watched the locals mingle, after nearly every single person I met said “oh you must be …………………………. (insert my middle sisters name)” “ahh no” and then the awkward “oh, we haven’t heard about you, where are you from”?

Me being my introverted self, felt almost claustrophobic watching everyone. Everyone knew everyone, everyone chatted and caught up and then moved on to the next group of people. This would seriously give me anxiety if I lived here and knew every time I walked down the street I would see someone I know. I definitely like living where I have my core people and everyone else is a stranger.

Post 92

Good Morning

4.20am 3rd December 2016. I am writing this on my break at work, yes on nights again. I am up to post 92 and trying to finish this 100 days of writing as fast as I can.

Tonight has gone surprisingly quickly, I started at 11.00am and there has been a steady stream of work, coffee, toilet stops, chatting about well anything and everything. I have music going which isn’t really helping my pounding headache, but is keeping me awake. A bit like the flashing Santa lights directly in front of me. The children’s play room has been cordoned off and completely cleaned out and has been filled with a Christmas scene – there is a fire place with Santa on top, Christmas stockings hanging off the fire place, there is spray on paint around the windows and a red and silver decorated tree. It looks very festive. I will go home this morning and put up our tree with boy 2 and deck the house out with Christmas paraphernalia before I go to bed.

Looking out passed the Christmas decorations to the car park, the sun isn’t here yet, the day is just beginning darkness is gone and there is light. That would have to be one of the only good things about working through the night, seeing the sun rise and the beginning of a new day. Having said that, on my drive home from working in the dark, I do feel as though I have an axe in my forehead and my eyes feel like they are burning exactly like the time that I accidentally bleached them.

I have just made a terrible coffee that looks like dirty water and tastes bitter. I have a piece of lemon slice that I was offered from another staff member. That’s another thing about night duty – the food. Bench tops and desks are usually covered in Tupperware filled with baking, lollies, chips and dip.

Heat packs, the hot little reds bags are one of my favourite things on night duty. I usually have one down the front and back of my shirt. If I wear the right bra, I can even walk around and work with them attached to me.

Oh don’t get me started on when the day shift walk in. I love them, like really love them and honestly tell them that, as soon as I see there fresh, wide awake faces ready to take over from me so I can go home to bed. Nearly time for me to go home to bed know. – Good night. x

Post 91

For the last 3 years we have hooked up our camper trailer and driven south down the highway to Northern New South Wales to a little place south of Byron Bay. The caravan park where we stay is tucked in between a headland and the beach. The camp ground doesn’t have many facilities in itself but the location is perfect. To get our favourite camp site we need to a year in advance. The dates that we have stayed have meant that the same people have been there each year. One lady that comes to mind when I think of Broken Head has stayed at the park at the same time of year for over 60 years, all of her children and grandchildren have spent summers at the park and her husband actually passed away there, on their annual holiday. She is an expert on the weather, she out fishes the men and can be seen walking the beach everyday.

We spend our time on holiday walking over the headland in the morning, going for a swim or a surf on the way back to camp, we usually have a nanna nap, go back to the beach for more swimming after lunch, then it is “happy hour” with cheese and wine before heading back to the beach for a late afternoon fishing and a pipi hunting session. Then back to camp and cooking on gas oven, with ingredients and produce from the fridge that we take with us, we have a comfortable set up with lots of shade, the boys sleep in their own tents, and we cover our camp site with 100’s of fairy lights making it shine brilliantly.

With mostly the same people camping in the park at the same time each holidays, my boys look forward each year to catching up with their mates from all over Australia. They spend their days, at the beach, in the park, going from camp site to camp site catching up and getting to know families. The group of mostly boys in the mornings head up to the camp kitchen and cook and feast on pancakes. Most days I have to actually remind them to eat and I always insist that they are back at our camp site for dinner; otherwise I would never for the whole holiday see my children.

One of my absolute favourite things is getting comfy in my queen size bed in the camper trailer and listening to the ocean as I fall asleep, going for long walks with my little family and practising yoga on the beach is pretty high on the list as well. The 16 days that we are away each year, living a healthy lifestyle of eating beautiful food, being active everyday, spending time together is my favourite time of the year.

Post 90

Post 90

 

Date days became part of our relationship when hubby was working away. We would devote one of his 5 days off for the month to us. Sometimes it was to go out for lunch or a movie, days we spent at home eating nice food and wine, one day we took a train to the city and ate really bad yum char. Another day we hiked a mountain with me cursing him the whole way because I hate that mountain.  Most of the time it was to the beach. There were some days when I was incredibly excited to go on a date with him and other days when it was not something that I wanted to do.

We went on a date this week to the beach. We haven’t seen each other for a while, he works in the morning starting at 6.00am and I start in the afternoon at 3.00pm, so there are a lot of text messages and I hear is voice more than I see his face. And this week when we went to the beach it was only for a couple of hours after we dropped boy 2 at school as I had to again start work at 3.00pm.

He surfed and I fried myself on the beach, we swam and I lost my bikini top in the dumping waves. We ran along the beach with our feet burning on the hot sand all the way to the car. We hiked up a hill and admired the ocean as we stood beside the lighthouse. On our way back to the car we passed a park with on the side of a hill with bench seats scattered throughout for people to be able to sit and stare at the ocean. It seemed it was date day for a lot of couples. We had a bit of a giggle and it made me feel as though we are on the right track with these date days as we saw the bench seats filled with oldies holding hands admiring each other and the ocean.

Post 89

Post 89

I asked a Instagram group that I am apart of to give me some topics to write about one of them was

Mom life tips (I know Aussies spell it Mum)

Where to begin!!!!

Always follow your own instincts. You are the vessel in which your babe has come from. You are the one that knows what is best for your child. From conception you have mother instincts, follow them.

The moment you find out you’re pregnant mother guilt sets in. On some days that bitch will kick your ass. On other days you will be on top. It is a part of your mothering gift. Don’t worry about it. It means you care.

Everyone and their mother will have an opinion on what you should be doing, when and how. Only pick out the advice that you need, don’t try and do every. single. thing.

When I had my first boy everyone would say “sleep when the baby sleeps” this drove me effing crazy, because my kid never slept. And when he was asleep I would have a shower or throw a load of clothes in the washing machine, while the whole time thinking “I should be sleeping while he is sleeping”. But it equally stressed me out when I would quickly jump into bed and try and sleep when he slept. In the end I did what was right for me on that day.

Talk to other mums. Your mum, grandma, aunts, girlfriends, anyone. Have adult conversations, don’t always talk about the baby.

In our house we have always lived by the rule – there are no secrets in the house. This means answering all questions honestly and openly and being prepared for more hard questions. My boy’s are 14 and 11. So far it seems to be working. And sometimes I wonder if I am being too open and blunt with them.

If you have boys let them be boys. Let them move and climb and throw balls and ride skate boards and go fishing, light fires ( within reason), mow the grass, chop wood. Their basic instincts are to be Neanderthals, to use and develop gross motor skills.

From a young age teach boys to be gentlemen – I do not let mine swear in the house, from the time they learnt to talk they have been taught to use manners, they are to be respectful to women, they must always kiss and cuddle any women in their family hello and goodbye. They are my muscle if I need to move things or carry things.

Read to them and read widely. Lots of genres, books, magazines, newspapers.

Let them see emotion. My boys have seen me laugh, cry, grieve, be angry, they have seen their father and I argue and they have seen us apologise to each other.

Always know what is going on with them, ask specific questions like “who sat next to you at lunch time?” “give me an example of one thing you learnt at school today”

Love them every day. Every morning my boys have had a good morning kiss and cuddle. I read somewhere once that a mother should never be the first one to pull away from the embrace with their child. Let the child break it. I have lived by this because sometimes they just need to hold on for that little bit longer.

 

 

Post 88

Post 88

The feature photo is a dragon fruit cactus. Boy 2 has a diverse palate and will try absolutely anything that is put in front of him. He has a soft spot though for fruit. A friend of his bought a pink oval shaped fruit to school to show my boy. If you think of a pear it is a similar shape. The flesh of the fruit that boy 2 had a taste of was white with black seeds and has the consistency of a kiwi fruit. Apparently the dragon fruit that has its origins in Mexico, is full of numerous nutrients, including Vitamin C, phosphorus, calcium, fiber and is high in antioxidants. From the first spoonful my youngest boy loved dragon fruit. So much so that he wanted to start growing them. We live in a sub-tropical area and the medium to large cactus seems to grow well here.

We were travelling home from western Queensland and boy 2 was yelling at us to stop the car. Now my boy gets car sick so of course we pull over at a ridiculous speed, because we have been there and done that with vomit all through the car. He wasn’t car sick at all, there was a fruit shop on the side of the road with dragon fruit plants for sale out the front. So after the initial “are you kidding me” had worn off. My husband went and purchased my son two dragon fruit plants.

He has nurtured his plants, he has fertilized them, and watered them and at one point even built a bamboo fence around them to protect them from our dog. He has sculptured them so they now look like works of art.

In saying all of this and how delicious the fruit is and how artistic the plant looks, we found out recently that it can take up to six years for the plant to bear fruit. My boy has a long wait for his treasured fruit, but I am sure he will enjoy the first bight after all of his hard work.

Post 87

Post 87

 

Happy summer, December 1st. I love summer, I get excited about the heat and the energy and the movement of summer – like running across sand when it is burning my feet, racing into the ocean so my skin stops burning, the way I launch of the seat in the 1975 Valiant with vinyl seats when it fries the backs of my legs. School is finished, holidays are here, cricket is endless and days and weeks are spent at the beach. Skin is brown and our lifestyle feels healthy and active. We eat light food and eat it outside, we have bonfires and seek relief from the heat in the afternoon under big leafy trees. The days are longer and feels refreshing to wake up with the sun, I enjoy waking up in the heat, it’s a motivator for me to get out and get the day moving early. The feel of grass crunching under my feet, the baked feeling of clothes off the clothes line, the burn of my skin when I step outside, the refreshing feeling of drinking water to stay hydrated. Light and airy clothes, bikini’s and togs, thongs on my feet, fruit that is juicy and the essence of the seasonal delicacy runs down my arm as I bite into it. The excitement of Santa, the twinkling of Christmas lights, the white noise of the fan or air-con while trying to sleep.

Maybe I love all of this because I am a fire sign (I am not a big believer in all of that – because whenever I read any descriptions on being an Aries none of it sounds like me), but maybe the time, date and year of my birth is what puts the fire in my belly in summer and the heat makes me feel alive and refreshed. Because winter sends me in the opposite direction. I feel bogged down and heavy, the clothes, the food, and the short days. I feel myself starting to go into hibernation around my birthday in March

So cheers to summer.

 

Post 86

Post 86

Second last day of school for 2016 for boy 2 today. Today he formally says goodbye to, two of his closest friends, one that he has grown and had adventures with since he started at kindy when he was 18 months old. The other he has been at the same kindy and school the whole time but only became friends with about 3 years ago. My big, little guy, I call him this because he is as tall as me and has bigger feet than me but is still only 11 and the baby of the family. He is not a book learner, give him something to do with his hands or an activity or task where he can move around and he is keen to learn anything.   This is my boys nature, even as a toddler I would read to him and he would politely close the book, while I was reading it to him and walk away or just start playing with a toy that caught his attention. Ask him a mathematics question and he spills the answer without even thinking. We made a decision early on in primary school to keep him down a grade than where he should be at. I initially, felt extremely stressed over the decision but the stress was more my ego and fears about him socially than anything to actually do with my boy. He seemed at peace with the choice and has since started listing a number of positives, with being older than his class mates.  He is excited as he will be able to get his learners licence in year 10 and he will be able to drive himself to school by the middle of year 11. He is also pointed out that he will be 18 when he goes to schoolies. I recently asked him how he really felt about not moving onto high school next year and he said with a shrug of his shoulders “I’m glad”. He didn’t elaborate and I didn’t want to hound him.

He wrote his goodbye speech to the oldest of his friends, he was a bit stressed about it because he wanted it to sound worthy of his friend and their friendship. I asked him to bring it home so I could help him with it, but he wanted to do it on his own. He asked if he could get a haircut for the assembly today, his father took him to the barber yesterday and is looking incredibly handsome. When I woke this morning he asked if I could drop him at school early to practice his speech and be prepared for a meeting of next year’s seniors that was being held at 8.30am.

I have my tissues and camera packed in my hand bag for the 1.00pm event.

Post 85

 

Post 85

I am sitting in the Coffee club across the road from the tyre shop, where my car is currently being fitted with some new rubber. We are going to be doing a lot of driving over the next few weeks and we are able to claim the amount back from our salary sacrifice arrangement. So on go the new tyres on the first day of summer.

I dropped off boy 2 at school and went to boy 1’s school to drop off the school blazer that he has worn maybe twice,  to have the left pocket embroidered with the cricket and rugby union premiership awards for 2016. One of my most treasured friends is the school receptionist, so was a great excuse to have a chat with her. We once upon a time worked together. Mostly on night duty. We met at work in 2002. I had been working in outpatients for about a year, I was pregnant and had awful morning sickness , so I started at 11am, I walked through a big heavy security door in to the area this morning and was nearly bowled over by the new girl, who grabbed my arms, and in a frantic voice asked ” do you work here?”. And that’s were our friendship started.

My husband text me this morning and I said I was going to see her and drop off boy 1’s jacket, his response was ” I will ring and change the tyres to next week!”. He knows how much we can talk. Like seriously talk for hours and hours. Unfortunately she was at work and I couldn’t hang out at her desk for hours chatting like we did when we worked at the  same desk .

So I am sitting in coffee club, sipping on an iced latte. I don’t usually buy cold drinks, but well it’s day 1 of summer and about 33 degrees. Michael Buble and Mariah Carey singing Christmas carols are the soundtrack to my coffee stop .

Post 84

Boy 1 is not here for the week, he is sweating it out in western Queensland with my dad. He was keen to go and stay with my Dad for this week, I think he thought that if he went out bush he would be given a little more freedom and not have his nagging mother on his back.  Because that is all I feel like I have done the last few weeks as well. Constantly reminding him of homework, assignments, work, cricket, cricket training, wearing the correct uniform to school, stop wrestling with your brother, don’t talk back, blah, blah, blah.

No wonder the kid jumped in the back of my dad’s car and barely said goodbye, after I wrapped him in my arms for longer than he was comfortable with and peppered kisses all over his face. He is not a touchy, feely kid so this show of affection didn’t sit well with him. My arms and heart ached when they drove out of my driveway, I stood there in bare feet and my nightie – because that is how early they had to leave, and watched the silver V8 four wheel drive power down our street. I text and left several message on both of their phones that first day, but with limited service where they were going I didn’t receive an answer. I finally talked to my dad about 12 hours after they had left and my boy was in the shower. I reminded my dad that his eldest grandson loves a long, hot shower and to remind him not to use all the water. I got the usual “he’ll be right” from my dad. He has been gone 3 days now and I miss his energy and presence in the house. I miss his face and his demands. I talked to him this morning and my heart melted at hearing his voice. He was absolutely fine and his usual self. He was getting ready for the day and sounded too busy to talk, but I piled on the questions.

“Are you ok?”

“Yes”

“Have you been sleeping ok?”

“Yes”

“What are you doing today?”

“Changing tyres”

“Please remember to drink lots of water”

“Yes, its going to be 44 here on Saturday”

“I will ring you tonight from work”

“Ok, gotta go”

“ok love you lots”

“bye”

“Bye, mate, love you”.

Post 83

Post 83

Our block of land has trees absolutely overflowing with birds. All types of feathered friends, kookaburras, cockatoos, king parrots, magpies,
butcher birds, owls and lorikeets. It can get very noisy, colourful and a privilege to see so much wildlife hanging out at our home. I often stand with a cuppa coffee at the windows that line the back of our house and watch the crazy antics of the birds, from
a distance. From a distance because I don’t like birds anywhere near me, not just wild birds, I am the same with our chickens. I am happy to throw food over the fence but that is about it. The few times that I have had to feed them, in their pen I look like
a big bird flapping my wings and making enough noise that they will not come near me. The black chook despite my efforts to scare her still pecks my feet – what a bitch, I am feeding her for god sake. I remember as a child going to some sort of zoo or bird
sanctuary and being absolutely paralysed with fear, when a bird came near me.  

 

So imagine my absolute horror when at work I receive a photo and a text message to say that my eldest son has rescued a baby lorikeet that fell
out of its nest that was in a tree in our backyard. This one text set off a flurry of responses along the line of “get rid of the bird”, “you have to make a choice, it’s the bird or me”, “call someone qualified to look after your patient”. My whole work day
was  interrupted and I was freaking internally for my whole shift as my family kept torturing me with photos of their feathery friend. My children with the bird on their head, my husband with the biggest smile on his face holding the little green ball of feathers
and the caged bird in my living room. One that said I would break boy 2’s heart if I said it had to go. I sent one back saying I was willing to risk my kid having a broken heart.

 

I woke the next morning to the bird crying, I don’t know if birds cry but it sounded like it was crying for its mother. I am finished with crying
babies, and I hate birds so was not thrilled to be woken with the cries of a baby bird. For now I seem to have lost the battle of the bird and it is still living with us. I am trying to be nice to it, I did approach the cage twice to look at it and both times
it has shit all over the bottom of the cage. Maybe it’s as scared of me as I am of it.

Post 82

Post 82

If you follow my blog at all you know that I have coffee with the school mums on a Wednesday morning. Friday night we branched out and went out for Thai and cocktails and hot chocolate as dessert. My bestie is leaving us this week for the big smoke and a much cooler and hipper part of South East Queensland.  I called it the “we love you and will be stalking you in West End dinner” (this is not a goodbye). Eight of us dressed up, left husbands and kids at home, and carpooled to Kinn thai restaurant.

Eight mums on the loose with Thai and cocktails can get pretty rowdy, and oh what fun we had. We sipped on cocktails to start with. I had a red angel, it was a bright red cocktail that came in a bottle, with a martini glass. Unbelievable value at $15 and I got, I think about 5 decadent drinks out of it. We ordered dishes that lined the middle of the table and filled our plates with massamun beef, chilly jam crispy soft shell crabs, stir fried Asian greens, chilli green peppercorn eggplant, pumpkin stir fried, pad thai, steamed rice. We moaned and salivated and piled more meat and veg on our plates, we encouraged each other to try each and every dish. The food was great, the restaurant was lively and hectic, the drinks and food arrived promptly, and the staff were friendly, the meal was good value for money. The eight of us chatted and laughed at either end of the table.

We moved next door for dessert, to the Chocolatier, I ordered an Azteca chilli hot chocolate. The dynamics changed as we sat at the outside tables, and chatted to different friends than at the Thai restaurant. If anything we became louder as the conversation morphed from kids, husbands, school holidays and house building to tattoos, penises, boobs, and bras.

Friday night dinner and cocktails was a successful as Wednesday coffee. It was a loud and happy send off for our beautiful friend and including some of her favourite things. Good friends, great conversation, scrumptious food and drinks, in a fun setting. I will be sure to write another blog post when the Cabo mums dine with her in West End.

 

 

Post 81

Post 81

I was up to my elbows in healthy ingredients: bananas, berries, apple sauce, apple juice, apple cider vinegar, vanilla extract, chia seeds, oat bran and flax seeds, when I did some baking during the week. I have been looking for recipes to make for afternoon tea that fill my boy’s bellies. Something healthy, something filling and not full of sugar. I needed something to keep them out of the kitchen for five minutes. They love smoothies when they get home from school, the big cups of creamy berry goodness fills them up, but I was looking for something else. Other snacks we have in the afternoon are cheese and biscuits, fruit, pies, sandwiches, brownies, popcorn. This recipe was included in an email I received from DailyOM, a yoga website that I subscribe to that has some full on shred yoga sessions.  I sweat and move my way through the yoga sessions, I read all of the motivational lessons that Madisyn sends via email. This recipe that was sent through for the very healthy, almost sugar free muffins, was terrible. The aroma filling my kitchen while they were baking in my oven, had everyone hanging out in the kitchen waiting for them to baked. They were barely cool enough to eat when one of my boys stuffed one his mouth and then almost immediately spat it out.  The muffins didn’t have the same fluffy shape as the not so healthy ones that I usually make, that have flour in them, they were a completely different texture.  The bananas, berries and apple sauce sounded delicious combined in a muffin to go with my arvo coffee and chat with my kids.   No these flat pieces of healthiness were bland, oh my god, so bland. The chickens loved them and I whipped up a really early dinner to stop my darlings eating every single item in my pantry.

Post 80

I stood in Woolies flicking through a home style magazine and the focus for the current edition of the glossy mag was hallways. My hallway is its own living, breathing beauty. The breeze in summer flows through the front door, and down the hall, streams into the living room at the end cooling the house.  The cold winds in winter bluster down the hallway and up through the tiny gaps in the floor, meaning my house is like a big wooden freezer. The boards on the floor moan and creak in places. Places that my boys haven’t learnt not to tread on when they are leaving their rooms and are trying to sneak along the hallway passed my bedroom – usually at 5.00am to play on the Play station. The main artery of my home has been used for a cricket pitch – this activity was not consented by me, it has been used for a photo shoot, when my boys were tiny tots, they raced matchbox cars down the hall, at times they have tried to ride scooters and skateboards down the wooden floor. The house is not level, making it a fun game to roll marbles down floorboards.  My husband and I spent a whole week painting the thirteen foot VJ walls, every single board. There’s also decorative features above the doors, two arch ways and a centre arch of decorative painted columns and moulding, picture rails that give character and are a standard feature of the Queenslander home. I haven’t in the time we have been in the house been able to decide on the perfect light fittings to light up our dark hallway. In saying that though, I have threatened several times to tape up the light switch as every single time boy one walks into the hallway he turns on the lights – every single time, day or night, it drives me mental. On several occasions I have been at our gate about to leave for the day, and sent boy 1 back to turn off the lights that I can see shining through the glass that surrounds the front door and swinging window above the door.  I also want two hall runners to line the floor, the ones that I want to sink my feet into are wool and silk Persian rugs, I need two of them. No surprise then that my floor is still bare.

Post 79

Post 78

 

I spent time on my yoga mat this morning. Stretching my muscles, my breathing, my mind.  I lost all thought and flowed, I flowed with the movements, the breath, the up and down. Letting everything go, breathing in light and energy, breathing out negativity. The breeze flowed around me in my lounge room, my hardwood floors were, where I planted my feet and followed the instruction to ground down through the earth. I bowed down and worshipped the sun, in the power sun salutation flow. I surrendered to the uncomfortable stressed feeling in my mind and body and worked through them as I :

 

1.       Breathe in, Breathe out bring hands to prayer at heart space

 

2.       Breathe in, bring hands above head, lift through chest

 

3.       Breathe out, bend forward, bending knees, bring hands beside feet

 

4.       Breathe in, take right foot back into lunge.

 

5.       Breathe out, take left foot back into downward dog

 

6.       No breath, into 8 point pose – toes, knees, hands, chest, chin to floor

 

7.       Breathe in, into cobra – lifting through chest

 

8.       Breathe out, into downward dog

 

9.       Breathe in, right leg through to hands into lunge.

 

 

10.   Breathe out, left leg through to meet right into forward bend

 

11.   Breathe in, coming up, sweep hands above head, lift through chest

 

12. Breathe out, hands to prayer at heart space.

I sweated and I repeated the sequence, my muscles quivered, my breathing laboured, it was hard work. In the final savasana, I closed my eyes and enjoyed the buzzing in my body and my energy. The rest of the morning, I was loose limbed, and relaxed, positive and motivated.

 

Post 78

Post 78

 

My husband sent me a text this morning. “Morning babe, you look hot today.” So I sent him back the feature photo on this post with “thanks love you – def don’t look hot this am, pulling my hair out over a kid who doesn’t want to do his spelling words”. This photo is my reality this morning, 6.00am I am telling one boy to get off this PlayStation and go and feed the chickens please. And I have the other one still in bed. The kettle over the gas element so far has taken 7 minutes to boil – I put too much water in there. Wednesday means homework is due in and spelling words need to be tested, for boy 2. Boy 1 eventually drags himself out of bed and starts getting ready for school at a snail’s pace.

The moment in time that this photo was taken I had just been screaming at boy 1 to get out of the shower, as  he had been in their for about 10 minutes, boy 2 was standing in front of me asking me to sign his spelling words untested. I had only had half a cup of coffee, and the dog tried to sneak through the door and sleep in the lounge room. What a morning, we filed out the door at 8.00am with boy 1 coming in the car with me so I can drop him at school and boy 2 riding along the path to his school.

Wednesday, means Wednesday coffee with the girls. We had to change venue today as our usual haunt is being renovated. We went to the local library and enjoyed a coffee at the café outside. I always claim that I am not a great school mum. However I had always thought that being the great school mum meant hanging around at the school all the time and being part of the carpark mafia. I was sitting at coffee this morning and looking at all of my lovely school mum friends as we sat and inhaled coffee, debriefed on our morning, recommended books about teenagers, and outlined school holiday plans. I love my little school mum crew catch ups on a Wednesday and am so grateful for them – love you ladies. We are a mixed bunch, of badass Mums (we still have to see that movie).

Post 77

Post 77

 

I am not a shopper. I actually can’t stand wandering the shops. However, I had a great time Christmas shopping for my family yesterday. I love gift giving and finding nice things to give to the people that I love. And most of the people that I buy for are girls, which is such a treat, I enjoyed trying to decide what to buy. The children in my family always receive books from me at Christmas, and I have a hard time making a choice when it comes to only buying one book. I spent most of my time while shopping in the book aisle and then moved on to the book shops.

My fingers itch to hold and flick through every book in a book shop. I would spend hours amongst the shelves of books if I could. I actually avoid book stores if I am shopping with someone else, I like to just be able to meander around and scan through the books and words and get lost in the different genres of books in the shop, on my own at my leisure.

I picked up the book Anne of Green Gables yesterday and it made me think of the photos that I had looked at the day before on a work colleague’s phone. She had actually visited the house where the story was set – Prince Edward Island, Canada. I love that about books– the inspiration they stir, the thoughts that they spark, that they stimulate conversations, and provide holiday destinations.

So next year 2017, will be the year of book giving, for my family and friends. For birthdays and Christmas everyone will be receiving a book, I can see and almost hear the eye rolls now. If any of you are reading this, send me lists of books you want to read and I will endeavour to get them. Maybe not all of them will be brand new books, some may be from second hand stores. But I will be giving books next year – early warning.  I will get to spend time in books shops, you know that it will be a well thought out gift and you get to read. Win- win for us both.

Post 76

Post 76

 

On a bit of a roll with writing at the moment and feeling motivated on this sunshiny Monday. Really early start to the day, after getting home at midnight last night from work. Parent/ teacher interview this morning at 7.45am. I always get nervous going to these things, bit like going to the Principals office really – not that I ever went to the principal’s office and not sure why I get nervous, the teachers are lovely . Anyway I got dressed in what I thought at the time of buying them, were a cute pair of blue overalls. When I walked past the glass doors at the school this morning, I looked like I was going to start painting the new building that is currently being constructed. I waited until 8.05am no teacher, so I left the parent/teacher interview with no interview. My husband is on a school excursion with the teacher today so he can chat to her at some point.

I did a quick pop into Woolies for more bread, milk. Had a de-brief on the phone to my bestie, made a cuppa, did some washing and got to writing. I stalked around on Facebook for a while and found a post that Daphne posted – Screw finding your passion by Mark Manson. Mark’s writing style is in your face, laced with the word fuck throughout and pretty much tells you to pull your head out of your ass and be realistic. I love it.

The common complaint among a lot of these people is that they need to ‘find their passion.’

I call bullshit. You already found your passion, you’re just ignoring it. Seriously, you’re awake 16 hours a day, what the fuck do you do with your time? You’re doing something, obviously. You’re talking about something. There’s some topic or activity or idea that dominates a significant amount of your free time, your conversations, your web browsing, and it dominates them without you consciously pursuing it or looking for it.

Womankind also had a similar article in Issue 10 – the one that I am published in (page 77). The article is “How do you measure your life”, by Madeleine Dore. “For modern people, stalked by their choices, the good life is a life lived to the full. We become obsessed, in a new way, by what is missing in our lives; and by what sabotages the pleasures that we seek” (this was a quote she used from the book “In missing out; In Praise of the Unlived life”, Adam Phillips.  The article prompts readers to think about how they measure their lives: Is it day by day or year by year? Do you measure the mountains you climbed or the valleys you explored? By the dreams imagined on the hopes dashed? By the wealth accumulated or by amount you have spent?

My motivation fix for today. Have a great Monday everyone.

Post 75

Post 75

It’s not even summer yet and it is hot. Baking hot, my clean sheets were dry and baked on the clothes line, before I was able to hang the next load of washing out. I love when I can feel the sun burning your skin when you walk outside, when the brown grass crackles and spikes into my bare feet, when the temperature is still cool inside our Queenslander home, but I can see the heat out in the yard.

I was in the baking sun, walking on my own piece of the land in bare feet that kept getting spiked with grass, gum nuts, leaves and bark. I watered the plants in our new garden that were wilting in the heat, it is next to the stairs at the front of our house and I wanted into look pretty so we filled it with a combination of plants and flowers from both of our families. There are geraniums from my grandma and papa, there are more geraniums from my husband’s aunt and uncle, and there is a frangipani tree that was my great-grandmothers on my father’s side, hydrangeas from me to my husband and a hydrangea that mum gifted my husband for his birthday. In other parts of our garden, I have a jade plant from my great-grandmother on mum’s side. I have a king orchid from my great-grandfather on dad’s side of the family. I have bromeliads from a lady that I work with.  Every time l look at these plants I think of the people they are associated with.

I was given some advice on families today when I chatted to a 102 year old lady. She is a tiny lady in stature, but has a big spirit. She is completely independently mobile and her mind as sharp as a tack. I asked her what her secret to living so long is. She laughed and said she gets asked this question all the time. She told me hard work and a loving family.

Post 74

Post 74

This week I feel that I’ve been the mother that continually makes demands from her kids. It really did feel like every time that I spoke to my
offspring, it was too ask them to do something.

 

“Put your tie and belt on”

 

“get ready for school.”

 

“get ready for work”

 

” have you got your homework”

 

We had a blow up about an assignment that was due in and it was not great, it was no where near the standard that he is capable of. Sitting at
cricket today, my head wanted to explode in frustration with the way my boy was playing cricket, he wasn’t playing to the best of his ability and was walking around the pitch waving his bat and not hitting the ball. I was the crazy mother on the boundary telling
him what to do. “Run”, “hit the ball”. My other boy was sitting with me laughing his little head off. This was after I had lectured him on the perils of borrowing money from friends and to never ever do it again. He had borrowed money from a friend to buy
a pencil with a rubber on the end at the school bookfair, I had told him no that he wouldn’t be buying a pencil from a bookfair and if he wanted to contribute to the bookfair he would be buying a book.  I was trying to teach him the lesson that if you don’t
have your own cash, then you save for the item or forget about it. I had the very same conversation with boy 1 when on the way to work on Tuesday. He his at the age (14), where he believes that everything in our life should revolve about him and that he is
entitled to absolutely everything that he lays his eyes on. We have set a limit for him to reach in his bank account before he is allowed to spend any money. This will be his emergency fund and this is the least amount that always must be in his account. He
thinks that this concept is ridiculous and that he should be able to spend whatever money he sees fit.

 

Everyday this week has felt like a battle, some ending in wine and a whinge to my husband.

 

I read an article on Facebook – by Rachel Stafford from the New York times, 10 ways to Salvage a bad morning before parting ways.

The last few sentences got to me : Day after day, you provide countless doses of love without even thinking about it. That sacred collection of loving gestures far outweighs this mornings clothing drama, and the 7am meltdown

Post 73

Post 73

 

It was my husband’s birthday the other day. In our home if it’s you’re birthday, you are celebrated. Ever since boy one’s first birthday I have always decorated the bedroom with a happy birthday sign, streamers and balloons. The boy’s try and tell me that they are too old for such decorations, but I religiously deck-out their rooms on the eve of their special day. Same went for my hubby but I did the kitchen as I didn’t get home until midnight from work and I didn’t want to wake him up.

I was able to swap a shift so that I could spend the day with him. We enjoyed a relaxed morning with the boy’s (as relaxed as a school morning can be) and headed for the local shopping centre. One of my hubby’s favourite treats if we have a morning off together, is to go to Donut king. He orders a large chocolate thick shake, six cinnamon donuts and I get a coffee and a few bites of his donuts. So we did this on his birthday. Some of our most serious and deep and meaningful conversations have been had in the food court near donut king, over chocolate, dough and caffeine, on this day we tossed up if we should get foot massages or go the movies for cheap Tuesday. We ended up at Happy Feet. After a fair bit of pointing at the “menu” of services, and filling out paperwork we are seated in comfy chairs getting our feet rubbed. As I have said in other posts, I am not a fan of massages and other people touching me, but my beautiful, elegant and very talented masseuse, Joanne (which I don’t think is her real name) had me walking out of the shop feeling like I was walking with jelly legs on a cloud.

I was starting to stress a bit around school pick-up, my husband was passed out on our bed having a nanna nap. I told my husband he had to do the school run to get the boy’s. I ended up pretty much, pushing him out the door, in a bit of a sleep haze. When my 3 finally walked up the back stairs, the kitchen was covered in more streamers and party food and cake covered the table. I wish I had a camera handy for when my husband walked into the kitchen. He smiled a big, toothy, happy smile and kissed me all over my face saying thank you, for a great day. We are, drank, took photos and sung happy birthday, before I took boy 1 to work.

We feasted on pork belly with roast veg’s and more cake for dinner, we slow cooked it all afternoon, while planting flowers and trees in our backyard. We enjoyed a wine and a beer while watching the local birds find new homes after the Sunday storm destroyed some of the trees that they called home. It was a beautiful day full of simple pleasures and we celebrated.

Post 72

My bestie invited me for wine on the deck and a bonfire on Saturday night, the day after the Christmas party; I was feeling a little tired and my stomach a little fragile. I spent an oppressively hot and humid day in front of the TV watching the Australian cricket team get absolutely pummelled by the South Africans. The heat was heavy, the sweat was pouring out of me and I was praying for a big weather change to roll through, storms are one of my favourite things. They change the energy and the feel of the day; bring relief, fear and excitement, one of nature’s most beautiful shows. Rain, thunder and lightning were just ahead of me on the drive to my dinner date with the kids in the car. Our house was on the edge of the storm we only received a small sprinkle, but by the time I arrived at my besties place about 15 minutes from home, water was over the road, the air was lighter and there was the divine earthy scent of rain (Petrichor – the earthy scent produced when rain falls on dry soil. The word is constructed from Greek petra, meaning “stone”, and ichor, the fluid that flows in the veins of the gods in Greek mythology.) The bonfire was called off, so we settled on the deck to catch up.

My bestie is working full-time as a contract graphic designer in the city and her husband is renovating their new home in Brisbane, so to aid with school drop off and pick-up, they have hired a lovely, young lady from Germany to help the family. She is adventuring around Australia for the next two years earning, learning and gaining life experience. As someone who has never travelled too far, but would love to and as woman that is double this girl’s age. I love her fearless commitment (well she portrayed fearlessness) to stay and experience Australia and herself, to have the confidence to be in a foriegn country on the other side of the world to your home and explore and know what you want and need. I was sitting on my favourite cane lounge chair, cradling a glass of red observing this confident young lady. At her age I was a wall flower – who before my first day of work in a new job, made my boyfriend come for a drive with me so I would know where to go. She knows how to participate in conversation with poise and self-belief in what she is saying. She was completely at home in the setting and happy to help herself and have no trouble asking for what she wanted. What a brave girl. Asking for what she wants and needs, there is such vulnerability and openness in the act. I can’t imagine at her age, in a foreign country, living with a family that isn’t your own – asking. I still have trouble asking for things, showing that form of vulnerability. Also very appropriate that on this same day, I borrowed my besties book written by Amanda Palmer “The Art of asking”.

Post 71

Remembrance Day was also the day of the work Christmas party. I’ve not been to any social events hosted by work. I am usually working, my husband was working away or it was just too hard. We live about an hour from the city where these events are held, public transport is not particularly safe after having a few drinks and I would never catch it on my own late at night and a taxi would cost hundreds of dollars. This year however I paid for us to go and celebrate with the people that I spend a lot of my nights and weekends with. I paid for our tickets and booked a room near the venue so that we wouldn’t have the hassle of trying to get home and so that we could relax and enjoy ourselves.

I went and bought a new shirt for my husband – it was too small, it was a different cut to what else is hanging in the cupboard. So I got my money back, because he wanted to wear a shirt in his cupboard that I am not fond of and I often tease him about. With the money from the shirt I picked out a dusky pink shift dress. Really pretty but I was a bit worried when I tried it on that I may look a bit like mutton dressed up as lamb. But the lady in the fitting room next to me assured me it looked great.

I organised for the children to stay with my mum the night, I picked up my husband from work and we headed into the city for a fun night away. We followed the lady on Google maps to the address that I was emailed on the confirmation of booking our room. We had a bit of trouble finding the parking, so we parked illegally and went to check in. At check in the reception staff were lovely, and they directed us to the carpark.  We parked and fought over the correct button to press on the lift. The room numbers outlined on the lift said that our room was on the lower ground (LG), my husband said that must be a typo, he thought we were on the LG in the carpark. We get to the room and my husband opens the door with great drama and excitement and we are both stunned. The images that were on the website where I reserved the room, are nothing like the actual room. Just to the left of the door is the bathroom, the shower is so small I don’t think that my average sized husband will fit. The double bed which should be a queen bed is in the middle of the room and there is barely enough room between the bed and the wall for me to squeeze through. To top it off though there is no window.

A friend of mine gave me her Uber code so that we could receive $10 each way on the first two trips of using Uber. It was fabulous – from our room that is a claustrophobics nightmare to the work Christmas party venue was $7.10 each way. So the country bumpkins (aka us), who never go to work functions in the city, who obviously aren’t great at choosing hotel rooms, and had never booked an Uber were the talk and laugh of the Christmas party. I was so glad that we made the effort to go it was a fun night with great people, prawns, oysters and other finger food, champagne, beer, wine and spirits, photos, laughs and a hang over the next morning.

 

Post 70

Post 70

I love interesting conversations. I had an interesting conversation yesterday with a friend that I don’t see often enough. We spoke deeply and opening about being a woman, wife, and mother. We spoke about family that is not blood but make us feel loved, connected and part of something important. We spoke about what we do for our families and friends. We spoke about dreams that we don’t know we want and being the peacemaker.

As I drove home I was thinking about the conversation. I was thinking about how women are the backbone and guiding force in families. In what ways women are the strength and the peacemakers, times when women placed others before themselves. Women are the cultivators of friendships, relationships and support to family and friends. How a woman’s vibe and energy influences the people around her. Women are the ears, eyes, heart and mind of her tribe.

I spoke about wives and mothers to an elderly Italian lady, and she told me about her 60 years of experience of marriage and child rearing. Go about it quietly darling. My husband thinks that he is the backbone of our family, pffft, I let him think that. Never underestimate the power of seed planting, she told me and patted my hand. I am the one that has made the decisions when it has come to our home, our children and family. But I have done it quietly, this doesn’t mean I haven’t fought and stood my ground, that I haven’t had to be creative, when I want my own way. And men can be stupid. She told me how they are happy in their marriage, comfortable in their finances, how she has a close knit family and friends, how she volunteers, she is active in her community and she can be happy at the end of her life that she has been kind and helpful.

I haven’t been back on social media today, after I got caught up reading one thread this morning, where women were being absolutely vile to each other and tearing each other apart because of the way they voted in the US election. At the end of the day we are all women and this was no way to treat a fellow human. There was one comment about how there will never be world peace now. It made me shrink my mind to my little world. My family and friends the people that are important to me, my work and my home, the things that I enjoy and the dreams that I have. I try to be kind and thoughtful, I make a point of hearing what people are saying. This is where world peace starts – with yourself. I have a key chain on my car keys – Be the change you want to see in the world. Women know how to connect people, build families and communities, women do have influence and will be the change in the world.

End of post 70

I opened bank accounts for boy 1 today. I set strict rules for his finances and he is excited to see his money grow.

Feature photo shows my new hair.

Post 69

Post 69

Changed this challenge to 100 posts. I have for the last 4 days felt guilty for not writing. During the four day’s I would think of topics, or things that I wanted to include in each post but didn’t have the discipline to sit and write the post.

Over the past four days, I  spent time having coffee with my mum and we did a bit of shopping my heart was full after spending a few hours with her and having a chat. I also had an incredibly interesting conversation with a lady that I work with, it was her first shift back from 6 weeks on holidays. She was telling me about her solo drive around Tasmania, the haunted BnB she stayed in, the amazing seafood, the lovely people and that for 48 hours she was listed as a missing person when she was travelling through dense bushland in the mountains of Tasmania and the last words that she said to her daughter on the phone were “ I am so isolated and frightened, if anything happens to me here you will never find me.” She was actually fine after a day with no phone service and no emergency service time was wasted looking for her.

I worked two night shifts, that were horrendous and made me pissed off and frustrated with stupid people, made me angry that anybody can procreate and thankful for emergency service workers.

On Friday night and into Saturday I didn’t see my children and my arms ached to hug them, didn’t sleep well with missing them.

Sunday I had three hours sleep, while my husband and boy 2 were fishing and diving, boy 2 was incredibly sea sick and still looked a bit green when he got home. Boy 1 wrangled another night at his friend’s house and then more time going to the movies with him. He came home tired, cranky and with a severe attitude problem, that didn’t sit well with my tired and emotional state coming off night duty. I spent Sunday with one of my oldest and dearest friends, we ate cheese, drank wine, talked while our children swam and laughed and our husbands talked and drank beer, we laughed and shared dinner together with our families, and then we all made our own individual Pavlovas. It was such a simple joy for the eight of us to be in the kitchen making a treat.

Yesterday, boy 1 went on camp, we didn’t part in a great way as he absolutely hated me for sending him to camp, apparently none of the cool kids go to camp. He thought it was also uncool to take a towel, toiletries, lunch for yesterday and water. We argued all morning about packing a couple of life’s necessities and he barely said goodbye. I cried, his father was fuming and he rolled his eyes.

I loved my husband a little bit more yesterday after our disastrous morning, when he hung new curtains in our bedroom. I have wanted curtains for the longest time, but never got around to it, or didn’t want to part with an exorbitant amount of money for material that covers a window, I also quiet like waking up with the sun. Now that I am back on nights I needed curtains.

End of post 69

Getting ready for work, the weather here is hot and humid and the makeup is sliding off my face.

Boy 1 is on school camp and can’t wait until he gets home.

Feature photo is me watching the cricket after waking up from night duty.

Day 68

Day 68

 

I have written in previous blog posts that I completed a 7 day nature challenge (bloody hell me and challenges this year – at least they are positive and helping me grow) with the hope of being published in the Womankind magazine. I dashed into the newsagent, grabbed the bright yellow magazine and raced to the counter and handed over $14.95 to see myself in print. I jumped back in my car and had only a few minutes to get myself to work. I parked in the carpark and thought “I really need to take a selfie of this for the feature photo of the blog today”. So I uncomfortably snapped a couple of photos of me holding up the magazine. I took the selfies, and flipped through the magazine. Issue 10 is all about Vietnam there are  articles, photography and art work about the Asian country.  My heart was pounding and my nervous giggle came out. And then there I was in print, my words printed on the pages of a magazine that other people can read, people that I don’t know and in countries all over the world. The excitement, pride, fear and accomplishment is so addictive, it makes me just wanna tap my fingers over the keys and keep on working on my writing. To see my words in print on soft duck egg blue paper is exciting. So when I was driving in the drive way at work and passed my husband,  I stuck my head out the window and waved the magazine in his face, “I got published”.  He couldn’t stop as he had traffic behind him and I don’t think he knew what I was doing waving a bright yellow and red a4 thing in his face.

It is now 11.46. Illuminated by the stove light, I have just finished pawing over the other entries of the nature challenge. I am stoked to be among the woman that completed the nature challenge and were also selected to be published.

 

End of day 68

Really short entry today, I had hoped that I would find the magazine and be able to write about it, so hadn’t thought to write anything else.

Had Wednesday coffee with the school mum’s this morning. Paid for our Christmas holiday. Posted a photo for the #loveyourspouse challenge. It was a photo of us when I was 18 and about to board a plane to then board a cruise ship for 7 days.  After our very first major argument, I went to the travel agent and booked a holiday on my own. Had the most awful time, I was sea sick for 3 day and my luggage was lost for 4 of the 7 days

Day 67

My sister nominated me in the #loveyourspouse 7 day photo challenge on Facebook today. Even though I am challenging myself to the ridiculousness of writing and posting for 100 days, I don’t enjoy taking part in challenges. I had a dig around in our old photos that are stored in a box under our bed for something decent to post. My heart hurt and melted with love looking at and holding some of the photos from our past. I sat for a couple of hours on my bedroom floor, with a cuppa coffee and all of my beautiful memories. I found the very first photo ever taken of my husband and I, we weren’t together yet, but I liked him a lot. He was a 19 year old surfer, long blonde hair, green eyed, bad boy– with his surf board, part-time job and lots of friends. I was the sweet and very innocent 17 year old good girl that had just finished school, never had a boyfriend. I had purchased my own nice car, landed a good full-time job that paid well for my age.

We still joke and laugh about how on earth we managed to become a couple. We are complete opposites in our opinion of things and don’t have much in common. I met him at a party that he was right at home at, and one I didn’t want to go to, but was dragged to by my cousin. Then for the next few months I would see him at other parties and a couple of times when we were out at pubs, the photo that I posted was on a surf camping trip over Easter and where we actually got to know each other a little better. In the face of our differences we were never one of these on/off couples. We somehow managed to work our way through difficult times. Sometimes I think back to times that we have struggled and wondered why one of us didn’t walk away, wondered what holds us together, we have had this discussion between us. And the answer has been from the both of us that we don’t want to walk away, there is truly some days that I question why that is. Then on other days, my heart can’t imagine doing life without him. I was looking at the nearly 20 year old photo and it made my heart melt a little bit at the way that he was looking at me. He still looks at me like that, and although there are some big issues that we don’t agree on at all. There is also a thoughtfulness in our relationship, little everyday things that help bind us together.

The good morning text, a flower picked for me and on show in a vase on the kitchen table, he loves when I am at home and have cooked a nice meal (sounds old fashioned and probably sexist, but he has definitely done his share of this when I work most afternoons of the week.) going for a walk together. He says it drives him crazy every single night when I have a sip of whatever he is drinking at the dinner table, but I know he loves it.

So although I groaned and cursed my sister for this #loveyourspouse challenge, I have loved going through photos today and being reminded of why I married my husband.

End of day 67

Melbourne cup day.

Cannot believe it is the 1st November

Day 66

Day 66

Happy Saturday.

Summer Saturdays are a busy day for my little family. It is 7.36am, my husband and boy 1 are already at cricket, boy 2 is at home with me, he is getting ready to go and spend the morning with a friend. I am thinking of everything I need to do between now and 2.00pm. Take boy 2 to his mates house, go and get a birthday present for the party that he is going to at 6.00pm, plan on texting my bestie to see if she wants to inhale a quick coffee, go and watch boy 1 play a bit of cricket, come home cook dinner for the family, lay down and have a quick nanna nap before getting ready to go to work at 2.00pm. And all of that is why my fingers are flying over the keys this early because I don’t want to be writing this at 11.30pm again and the rest of the day is overbooked.

A couple of thoughts of the day, to carry me through.

I have four decks of affirmation cards in my office. All with varying messages. Today, I picked one from the Money and law of attraction cards by Esther and Jerry Hicks.

My life is as good as I allow it to be.

Many people focus upon unwanted things, with no deliberate attention to the emotional guidance within the, and then they try to compensate for their lackful thinking with physical action. And because of the a misalignment of energy, the y do not get results from their action, so then they try hard by offering ore action , but still things do not improve. Like the air you breathe, abundance in all things is available to you.  Your life will simple be as good as you allow it to be.

The “on this day” feature on my Facebook showed me a memory from a year ago and it is a good thought

“Thou shalt not judge, because thou hast fucked up in the past also.”

 

End of day 66

Not even close yet, seen at it is 7.52am but wishing everyone a happy day and will see what today brings.

It is now 12.09pm I have done everything on the list above and also sat in 45 minute’s worth of traffic. It would usually take 14 minutes to get home from the local cricket field. About to go and rush through a nanna nap.

Day 65

Day 65

Annual Grandparents day at the school today. I generally am uncomfortable at these school events, however today my anxiety didn’t rear its ugly head. The primary school years are closing in fast for my little family, the end of next year I will start paying two lots of school fees at the local catholic high school.  Today my boy lead me around the art displays, I chatted and laughed with some of the parents and teachers and one that has been around my family for 12 years, I also spent time with Mum, she raced to the school on her lunch break to spend time with my boy on Grandparents day. The Montessori philosophy, “help me do it myself”, was holding strong today, the wonderful parents that volunteer at the school had art / craft activities set up, one activity was to decorate a triangle that would be made into bunting for the school to use. The only way to make the calico piece of material pretty was to sew something onto it. My husband can attest to my non-existent sewing skills, he always laments the fact that he hasn’t got the 1950’s housewife that cooks and sews and knits in her heels and make-up.   However those buttons were sewn on the little piece of material in the shape of a “T” and they looked good. With confidence brimming over at my new found handiness I then embroidered “TE” on it as well.

I submitted a week’s worth of writing to Womankind magazine for a competition they were running a couple of months ago. They enjoyed my writing and it is to be published in Issue 10 of the magazine. Issue 10 was to be in newsagents and other retail outlets today, I searched the two outlets that I know stock the magazine near me and no one had it.

I started reading a new book on my phone via the kindle app, on my tea break today. “An Italian Journey: A harvest of revelations in the Olive Groves of Tuscany by James Ernest Shaw. I am only 35% into the sample, but his descriptions of the people and the place has me wishing I was sitting in a Piazza sipping palpation inducing coffee, not in the fluro lit room with air conditioning blowing like the arctic, forcing down international roast.

End of day 65

My stomach is sore from laughing so hard this shift. The last four shifts I have worked with the same lady, this never happens our eight hours a day have featured a wide range of characters and our conversations are getting funnier, louder and more shocking that later the night goes on.

Look at the concentration on my face in the feature photo! That button was going on.

Day 64

Day 64.

Feelin’ the love today.

 

Mum, I missed you yesterday! Are you staying home tonight?

Morning babe, please tell me you’re not working tonight!

Mum can you please pick me up from school today? I love when you are at school in the afternoon.

My bestie shared my feature blog post for askingmums (read about it here) website, on our school closed group Facebook page and there were heart felt, thoughtful comments from parents of the school about my writing.

There has been increased traffic on the blog this week.

And I have been included in an Instagram group of women from all over the world. The purpose of the group is to encourage and support each other.

A video and article on Facebook appeared in my feed today on Why women need a tribe. It was a great read and an interesting video with facts and scientific research about why women thrive and are healthier when they have the love and support of their sister tribe. It made me think of the love I receive from my sister tribe. If I have learnt nothing else from this 100 day blog challenge it is how the positive words, love and encouragement from my sister tribe has kept me on track, has made me get the hell out of my comfort zone and the encouragement has made me confident and wanting to extend myself further.

This afternoon I was in the kitchen and my husband called out from wherever he was in the backyard. “Babe, I need you down here, can you come here now”. I silently muttered about how bossy he is, and got down stairs to a wine and cheese set-up on the grass, and my husband telling me how happy he was that I wasn’t going to work today.

End of day 64

The wine that I have had tonight has me feeling the love of a pounding headache already.

 

Day 63

Day 63

This summer I am going to wear pretty dresses. I have a couple of nice summery dresses but not enough to get me through every hot day until March. I treated myself to a maxi dress with my tax return. It fits perfectly, the material is stunning, the dress draws attention and every time I wear it I get comments about how beautiful it is. It was $104 that included postage. I cannot be buying dresses at this price to fit out my summer wardrobe.

About three weeks ago, I hopped on EBay. With a passion I hate online shopping. However I found some cute dresses that are my style, I got my measurements because I didn’t want to be caught out buying a small if I needed a medium. I found a cute little dress from an online store overseas. White lace, with a neckline that sits on my collarbone and a hem that falls to my knees, slight A-line, summery and pretty. Snapped it up for the $1.99 plus free postage. I mean how ridiculous is that price?

I came home last night from work, the only light on in the house was the light over the stove. I could faintly see white material draped over the chair at the end of the kitchen table. It was my dress. This morning after dropping the boys off I came home to play dress ups with my pretty new dress. So glad that I ordered the Extra-large dress when I am usually a small to medium. Because the pretty little white lace dress with the neckline that sits on my collarbone and the hem that falls to my knees that I ordered. Is actually a pretty little white lace dress with the neckline that sits on my collarbone and the hem that falls to my barely my arse. So instead of having a new dress I have a new top.

End of day 63

Feature image is my new dress.

Another little writing beauty from my book 642 tiny things to write about from my bestie.

Write 20 things about your first car.

  1. It was a yellow Mitsubishi Colt.
  2. It was a hatchback
  3. I bought the bucket of bolts that it was to annoy my Dad.
  4. My dad hated that car with a passion
  5. My dad made me learn how to change a tyre, check the oil and water before I was allowed to learn to drive it
  6. It was for sale in the front yard of a house at Wamuran. Mum and I saw it on the way back from friends that lived in Toowoomba and every time I drive past there I think of the buzz box.
  7. It had no air-conditioning
  8. It had a great stereo
  9. A couple of days after I got it and Mum was at work I tried to learn how to reverse it myself and ended up in a tree. And dented the back of it.
  10. One of the cows that we had at home at the time sat on the left hand front panel.
  11. It would scream, everyone could hear me coming in that car.
  12. I learnt to drive in that car
  13. I took a corner in that car at about 80 kilometres an hour and my mother reminds me of this every time we go around that corner.
  14. That car drove me to school every day with my sisters, to work every Saturday, to schoolies, my first full-time permanent job, to my first boyfriends house.
  15. It used to cost me $10 to fill it
  16. It would splutter to a stop if I was stopped on a hill.
  17. The seat covers were brown
  18. My sisters learnt to drive in it
  19. It was handed down to both my sisters.
  20. I can’t remember where it ended up when my little sister finished with it.

 

Day 62

Day 62

The wall that I am standing in front of in the feature photo is the wall in my bathroom that hides my toilet. I hate this bathroom with a passion, I have said from the very first inspection of the house that it reminds me of a public toilet. I have over the years had several opinions on this monstrosity, some people have said embrace it and make it a feature, some have said knock it down and rearrange the whole bathroom. I would actually like to do a bit of both. Turn this bathroom into the “boy’s locker room” style bathroom so the wall could stay looking like a public toilet. My bedroom is gigantic, so would love my own little slice of heaven and privacy in the form of an ensuite.  A meme that I had posted on this day 4 years ago showed on my Facebook page today, and it is a prayer to children to leave their mother alone in the bathroom, that I love you, but leave me the hell alone and give me a minute of privacy once I step into the bathroom. YES this is something I crave.

Last week I was soaking in the bath, my two were playing in the backyard and I was enjoying the burning water on my skin and the lavender scent surrounding me. Two minutes, two minutes this lasted until I had one boy come running into the bathroom to pee, then the other one came in and asked me what was for dinner (roast and veg told you about 10 times now), could I make him a smoothie (no its 5.00pm- dinner will be ready soon), could I hurry up in the bath as he would like one (no go away).

I was in my own personal public toilet the other day, the bathroom door was shut. Then the door was open one of the boys was coming into fix his hair – GET OUT I screamed, then he screamed I need to fix my hair as he slammed the door.

This morning I am shaving my legs and an argument breaks out in the bathroom over an apple juice popper that was in the freezer and as to who was the owner and would get to take it to school. Once I was all smooth again and dressed, I took the popper and no one got it. This was after I fought for the mirror with boy 1 who was trying to make himself look beautiful before school, not that it made a difference and we had an argument over tucking his shirt in (he tried to tell me that he doesn’t have to tuck his shirt in because it’s summer) well I will have to show him the email I received from the school today to tell me that my son has community service because his shirt was untucked and he looked untidy.

End of day 62

Off to use the bathroom to get ready for work all by myself as my children are at school.

I am the feature blogger for this week on www.askingmums.com.au have a read of why I chose Montessori education.

Day 61

Day 61

I feel as though I need to write a disclaimer for this one. As I fear I am going to sound like a complete nutter.

Since I woke this morning I have felt very unsettled, not even unsettled just like I have energy that I don’t know what to do with, it’s kind of physical, but I also feel it in my head. Like I can’t stop thinking about something, but I don’t know what I am thinking about. And for the last two nights I have dreamt that I have given birth to a baby girl. Whenever I have this dream, something changes in my life. (Honestly it does, the first time I had this dream, my husband got a job as a fly in fly out worker the next week) The only thing that I can relate this wired feeling to, is that I feel as though I have forgotten to do something, or the feeling when you know a word but can’t remember it.

When I was having brekky this morning, small writing ideas kept on popping into my head, then a conversation that I had with a friend would show up, then I was on social media and an article that related to both was in my feed, my Instagram also seemed to be haunting me today with images that increased the feelings that I had. Like I was supposed to be linking the dots. I took the boys to school and decided that I need to just sit on the grass and ground myself, get out of my head and whatever came up, would come up. I kept coming up with all of these posts ideas I wanted to write about and felt as though I needed to jump up and start writing. I felt as though I should be researching but I wasn’t sure what. But something kept me glued to the grass. (Christ. I sound like a freak)

I pulled on my housewife role instead, I washed clothes, walls, the ceiling in the bathroom, stairs, I folded laundry and chopped onions and browned meat for dinner, and I made muffins for afternoon tea. I paid bills and tidied the office. I did the school run and have been for a walk with my husband and our dog. I called off cricket training for tonight as tonight and Sunday night are my only nights to have dinner with my family this week, my kid hates me.

As I sat down to write this post I looked to my left and Big Magic by Liz Gilbert called to me. I did my usual trick of closing my eyes and randomly picking a page. I opened to page 35. Enchantment. I will summarise this page that actually made me get chills and perhaps gave me an answer to today’s weirdness.

Ideas are a disembodied, energetic life-form. Ideas are driven by a single impulse: to be manifested. It is only through the human’s efforts that an idea be escorted out of the ether and into the realm of the actual. The idea will try to wave you down. Rarely but magnificently there comes a day when you’re open and relaxed enough to actually receive something, and then the magic can slip through. It will send a universal physical and emotional signal of inspiration. Chills up the arms, nervous stomach, the buzzy thoughts, the feeling of love or obsession) the idea organises coincidences and portents to stumble across your path, to keep your interest keen. The idea will keep you awake at night and distract your daily routine. The idea will not leave you alone, and then in a quiet moment it will ask, “Do you want to work with me?”

So this where I am up to. Maybe an idea is knocking and I don’t know what it is yet.

End of day 61

I have just re-read this and I sound like a crazy person

Congratulations to my cousin that had a baby girl today, Poppy Mable, she will never see this but spread the love and all that.

Day 60

Day 60

After burning my hands I had to call in sick to work yesterday, because I actually could not touch anything. I came to work today. I asked to be allocated to an area where I wouldn’t have to type much because of my fingers. They haven’t blistered thankfully, but they look like I have rolled my fingers in maroon ink and are stained. They aren’t particularly painful, but they are sensitive and smooth, I have burnt off my finger prints. When I wash my hands – which I do religiously because of where I work, I have a similar feeling to when I burnt them. When I type they feel tender. I made a cup of tea, the heat coming off the cup made them feel the same as when I burnt them.

It is 10.08pm I am having a cup of bad coffee while I write this and for the first time in ages I can’t think what to write. I am sick of talking about what I have done during the day (not much today, I slothed on the lounge with boy 1 this morning before work and watched Queensland and New South Wales play cricket. Boy 2 was cranky with us because he didn’t want to watch and it was raining outside and I denied his request to take him to the skate ramp. I came to work and well I worked.)

On my tea break I stalked around on my sisters and my besties Goodreads accounts to see what they have been reading as I need a new book. When in Rome, the book that I was reading was annoying me and I really couldn’t get into it, so it was put back on the bookshelf. I did find some interesting books that I will look at further when I can use my home Wi-Fi, instead of the data on my phone that seems to run out extremely quickly.

While sitting here sipping on my bad coffee that I have to drink with my right hand, I am listening to registrars think up diseases and conditions that they learnt about in medical school and will probably never see or have to treat. They are trying to remember the symptoms and treatments. I want to ask them why they are doing this, it seems pointless.

End of day 60

Typed this with two hands today, but used my finger nails to hit the keys.

Just got home to a child that is sleep walking.

 

Day 59

Day 59

I am typing this blog post with 1 hand. Last night I took a plate of garlic bread out of the oven, put it on the dining room table, and then grabbed the plate to move it further into the middle of the table. The result was me roasting four fingers on my left hand. The pain made me want to vomit, the burning agony travelled up my arm. I ran my fingers under water, clutched an ice pack and continually smothered Aloe Vera gel from our plant in the garden all over my fingers, I medicated myself on Panadol and Neurofen.  I had an uncomfortable, sleepless night and today we had cricket, groceries and I was supposed to work this afternoon, I called in sick as my tools of the trade now resemble burnt chipolatas.

Cricket didn’t last long for me today, my boy was opening bat and he was out in the first over,  he got caught off a ball that he should of left. My cricketing fanatic is having trouble settling into his new team, I am not sure if we have done the right thing by his game by pulling him from his old team. The team that he had played with for 4 seasons, was elevated to the senior’s competition this year. I wasn’t comfortable having my fourteen year old play with adult men. He is cocky and arrogant enough about his abilities and I wanted him to grow naturally with the game and his age not be shoved into an older team. The boys that he has played with for the past 4 years, played seamlessly together, they all new each other’s strengths and weaknesses, they supported each other and knew how to deal with each other when the emotion and spirit of the game was at fever pitch or they were having a hard day on the field. All the boys in that team were on par with their cricket skills and abilities, this lead them to 4 grand-finals. Being in this new team he hasn’t gelled with this new team at all. There seems to be big differences in cricketing skills in this team and he seems to have lost his passion and enthusiasm. I was thinking today as I watched him, if it was more his old team and his mateship with them that made him step up and play the way he did, because his manner and energy toward the game is not the same since we made the decision I am now not sure about. After he came home from his game of cricket this afternoon, which he was filthy with me about, because he wanted to leave when he got out. We argued because I said it is a team game you will stay until the end of play. He went and spent the afternoon with this old team, he helped them warm up and co-ordinated the batting practice and bowling with them, he hung out, talked and laughed with his mates and watched them play with the seniors. When he came home after 5 hours with them, he was like his old self, the enthusiasm, the passion and the excited conversation had returned.

Boy 2 was with me the whole day, while his brother was at cricket and his dad at work. We did the cricket run, had coffee and iced chocolate with my mum, we did the groceries. Today he was the most amazingly kind, generous and thoughtful boy, he helped his one handed mother do everything. He helped with groceries, he helped with preparing food. He didn’t complain even once. He was constantly asking if I was ok.

End of day 59

This typing with one hand is bloody hard

Going to clean and dress my burnt little fingers.

Day 58

I meet up with Marina this morning at her friends store/coffee shop Gallery B on Enoggera Road, Newmarket. We were seated on the decking for a couple of hours at the back of the building, drinking Turkish tea, talking and throwing around ideas, thoughts and details for a little project that we are going to do together. Excited to start the research for the project.

It was an incredibly warm spring day today, not sure what I was thinking this morning when I pulled on a pair of skinny jeans, but by the time that I left Marina and drove the 45 minutes home I pretty much ran into my house and was ripping the denim off as fast as I could. I replaced denim jeans for denim cut offs and a really comfy cotton singlet that I only wear around the house. My brain was exhausted with so many ideas swirling around, so I curled up on my bed and fell into a glorious nanna nap, only to be woken by my phone ringing next to my head. It was my dear husband who was doing school pick-up on his way home from work. The times was 2.55pm and he was calling to tell me that he was still about 35 minutes away and to see what I was doing. In my half sleepy state, for the life of me I couldn’t figure out why he was only calling 5 minutes before boy 1 had to be picked up, boy 2 was riding so he was fine. It doesn’t matter where I am or what I am doing, even when I am on night duty or have plans, school pickup is always on my mind and making sure that I will be at the school when the boys finish. I wanted to say “what the bloody hell?” “Why didn’t you call me earlier?”, “you know it takes longer than 5 minutes to get to the school!” But pick your battles and all that. So I flew down the stairs and just as I was starting the car boy 2 rode in to the yard. Anyway all was well got boy 1, and when my husband finally got home her brought me marvellous creations chocolate.

End of day 58

The feature photo is of my unfortunate school pick up outfit that I forgot to change out of because I was in a hurry to get to my kid at school and didn’t think of my clothes.

Went for a long walk this afternoon with boy 2, my husband and our dog. Again we were stopped every 5 minutes with people admiring our big dog.