Thursday, 29 July 2010

Small Thing #15 - Surviving a Bad Day.

Yesterday Hamish was in a bad mood. Normally when his bad moods arrive on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday I thank my lucky stars because he is in preschool. Yesterday however, there was an excursion and parents were invited. We walked from preschool up to the main street,  to a Vietnamese restaurant for lunch.

It had the potential to be a lovely day.  14 kids sitting round the table while we all tried new foods and talked about different cultures. And for most of the table it was ... except for Hamish and I.

From drop off, Hamishs bad mood was something that we were obviously going to need to deal with, together.

I could go into what I tried and how it all worked but the surviving didn't come down to him it came down to me. Somehow within the hours of him trying to push my buttons, yelling and doing his damnedest to make me cranky, I managed to keep it together. Sure I yelled a little and I had almost murderous thoughts but mostly I took deep breaths and tried to shrug off his mood.

Think about it, when was the last time someone was obviously trying to bait you? How did you react? Did your reactions show the best of you? Or the worst?

It a pretty wonderful thing when someone is pushing and pulling you and you manage to keep it all together. Actually its more than wonderful, its fantastic.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Small Things #14 - Drinking In

We all know I love my coffee. It comes from making it for so many years and from years of broken sleep, needing the kick start a cuppa can give me. We have a great little coffee machine at home that makes cafe quality coffee. But once in a while I grab a takeaway. Its lovely to have someone else make my coffee. Its like having someone cook for you.

Recently I've been occasionally having a 'drink here' coffee. Its a small thing but it feels very decadent.  Like eating dinner out ... Without the actual eating.

So I'm sitting here in a cafe on this cold winter morning. With a hot cup-a-joe in my hands. Listening to the lounge music, people chatting and the clinking of cups and saucers.  And while the waitress brings me coffee and asks if I want a glass of water or something to eat I get to blog/read/people watch to my hearts content.

$3 is a small price to pay.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Photos from the New Camera

Just a few photos taken with my new (regifted from dad) camera.  I really haven't had as much time to play with it as I would have liked, but I'm liking what I'm seeing so far.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

64 is the new 46

Apparently Helen Mirren just did a topless shoot to promote her latest movie.  Maybe she just did it cause she could.  Either way I just had to share.  Seriously, I hope I'm still this amazing at 50 let alone 64.  

PS.  Don't click if you have nudity issues, it's tastful but I thought a warning was in order.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Small Things #13 - School Holidays.

I've purposefully stayed away from talking about awesome parenting moments. Mostly this is because I know a lot of people don't have kids. But also because so much of the time I spend noticing my own small things has to do with my kids. I feel like this blog, in a way is a tribute to noticing the small delightful things that my kids do. And so a whole month of that could be ... Well honestly it could be quiet boring to everyone.

But it IS school holiday. And that is something so predominant in my mind that it deserves a post all of its own.

I know that school holidays are hard. Its something that is written all over facebook, and talked about in parks. But really all this extra time just to wind down and connect with your kids has to be a blessing. It's just hard to see within all the madness.

So today's shout out to all the parents of school aged kids. Try and find the small awesome things in the last 2 days of the school holidays.  Find the things that remind you of how amazing your children are. Get on the floor with them, laugh with them, let them pick the activities of the day and attempt them with good humour and patience.

Trust me at some point after all the hallelujahs on their first day back at school you will miss them. It may only be for a moment and it may be when there is no one else in the house to get the remote after you have just sat down. Either way, you will miss them *grin*

Monday, 12 July 2010

A Lighter Note

OK, I just made the Chocolate Mug Cake.  It wasn't quiet as brilliant as I hoped.  I hadn't thought about the fact that it would have that (not so) lovely microwave cake rubberiness.  But it took a maximum of 7 minutes and as a quick 'I need chocolate NOW... but I cant be bothered walking up the road' it was just right.

In hindsight, maybe this should have been a small things post!

Small Things #12 - Bargains (aka I've been shopping again)

Today's small thing is actually a double post.  You see its school holidays and although I LOVE having Jack home it still means that I am on mummy duty more and have less time to chill and focus on the small things.

Today after sending the little one to school I took Jack and his friend from across the road out to do a few errands.  I decided that as a sweetener we would pop to the second hand shop.  In hindsight it was really a sweetener for me, cause the boys were just enjoying running around together.

So after my errands which cumulated in me finding out that 1. One pair of boots I kind of want don't come in my size and 2. The other pair that I really want are so narrow I couldn't fit my foot in and so I have to start my shoe search all over again.  Off to the second hand store we went.

I had it in my head that I wanted to get a short denim skirt.  As I have mentioned before, I often go second hand shopping with an item in mind.  That is a dangerous way to shop because you are inevitably disappointed.

But today I found a great denim skirt.  The price was a bit more than I had expected to pay but I have been looking for a few months and so I bit the bullet.  As I took it to the counter the woman mentioned that there was a store wide sale today and that everything was 30% off.  Huzzah!  I resisted going back and grabbing every other thing that I had looked at but decided against.  Because in the end even a bargain stops being a bargain if you don't really need it .... doesn't it?

Sometimes a bargain is something cheap, sometimes its just something that is less than you wanted to pay, sometimes its something free, or something full price that you happily have enough money to pay for.  When was your last bargain?

In the last few days I have had a few

- Pinky mini skirt
- Denim skirt
- Pair of kids Colorado sand-shoes
- FREE old fashioned cocktail soda maker thingy
- FREE collapsible stool
- bag of kids clothes (for $5)
- 4 x weird little cheap toys that the kids picked up
- 4 x books
- A really cute red pyrex bowl
and a whole bunch of other little bits and pieces that escape me at the moment.

In the end we stopped of at 4 different second hand shops.  Got rid of that 'gimme gimme gimme' feeling.    All for the bargain price of under $30.

A bargain can lift your spirits.  Fill your wardrobe.  Keep the kids occupied.  And a million other things.  So thank the god of bargains next time you find something that brightens your day.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Small Things #11 - Facing a Fear

Its no small thing to face your fears. Fear is ... scary. And challenging. Its something that can make your blood freeze or just make you stop in your tracks. But mostly that is just the emotional side of fear. Logistically a lot of fears are actually pretty easy to face.
A challenging phone call can be incredibly hard to face emotionally, but logistically you make phone calls every day. Riding a motorbike can be scary. But logistically all you have to do it get it off the verandah.  The dark can make you fearful. And yet the logical part of your brain knows that there is nothing in the dark that wasn't there in the day ... Except for bats (and let's face it, scary as they may be they are probably not going to fly down and attack you.  No matter what the movies say)

With some things we let fear control portions of our lives. Sometimes this is justified. I for one am scared of heights (kind of). Its actually things like open cliff edges that scare the bejesus out of me. But I'm clumsy and feel like I am one trip off plummeting to my death so this is a fairly justified fear. I am also scared of spiders. But I realise that this is mostly unjustified. A daddy long leg spider is not going to hurt me and yet having them watch me while I'm sitting on the loo freaks me out.

And yet everyday when I sit on the loo I look those bloody daddy long legs in the eye and continue peeing. Sometime I talk to them "hello Mr daddy long legs, I'll make you a deal, if you stay where you are while I pee, I'll let you stay there and forget that my instinct here is to grab the bug spray".

Ok I may sound crazy but in my own way every day I face one of my smaller fears.

When I was in high school a friends mother told him he wasn't allowed to see me anymore. I decided that I needed to plead my case. So at 16 I faced my fear of a challenging conversation and called her to talk about the issue.  Long story, short. This man is still a friend today. If I hadn't have done something that scared me that day I would have missed out on a lot of great times. In a way that call made me who I am.

That's what facing a fear does. It changes you. Often its a before and after moment. Something that changes your path. With things like the spiders its an ever so slight change. With things like the phone call its much larger.

So next time life is feeling stale, ask yourself, what could I do to change things? Maybe facing a fear could be just what you need.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Conversations with a 5.5 year old (on holiday from school)

After a particularly sloppy kiss from me Jack wipes his face.

Me: Oi! Your wiping my kiss away
Jack: (wiping his hand on his shirt) It's ok mum I'm wiping it off my face and onto my heart.

Aww bless :)

Small things #10 - Sleeping In

Laying in bed you hear a car pass, birds twittering, a plane overhead or children playing. You open your eyes to see the room lit in an unexpected way and roll over to look at the clock. You realise that you have slept in. Not the sort of sleeping in that leaves you in a mad panic trying to get ready and be at work as quickly as possible. But the sort of sleeping in that comes on a lazy Sunday morning where the most you had planned for the day was putting a load of washing on.

You roll over with the luxury of a clock free day and decide to spend a perfect 10 minutes getting ready to greet the day. You feel the warmth of your bed and the quiet of the room, there is no better place at this moment.

This sort of sleeping in comes to few and far between. But when it does it makes the day flow with a certain calm that makes the fact that you have lost 1/2 a day in bed hardly matter at all.

Monday, 5 July 2010

Small Things #9 - Finding Something Your Looking For

In a world full of things its amazing how rarely things get lost.  I for one am often shocked at how the children and I can find some random thing that the kids suddenly want.  Its not like these things actually get put in the right place day after day.  But somehow we always seem to know where things are.

Think about it, think about something totally random that's yours and I'm sure within five minutes you will be able to put your hands on it.  Its amazing how our brain can store the location of the 100s of items we own.

But we get complacent.

We get used to knowing where everything is. And then one day something is missing.  Inevitably it is something that you really need this second.  Car keys, passport, the kids latest obsession.  Sometimes they are just tricking and you find it within a few minutes.  Mostly you find them at some point. Other times they go to the place where single socks seem to go.

Once in a while during cleaning you find something you didn't even realise was lost but you know that one day, probably soon, you would have been looking for that exact thing.  Tossing cushions, looking behind shelves, opening every bag and box all in vain because you realise that you would never have lifted that particular cushion or looked in that corner of the fridge.

You breath a little sigh of relief and put it back where it belongs.  Your relax, your get complacent, until the next time.

Friday, 2 July 2010

Small Things #8 - Downloads

There are several shows that I love that are not shown on free to air TV. Its frustrating that if I want to watch these shows I have to either wait for their release on DVD (and hope our video store decides to stock it) or download them.

So when the calendar is about to change over from one month to the next suddenly all of the downloading that I have had to leave in case AB needs it for work is suddenly mine to use as I please.

I can finally catch-up on TV shows, or download free podcasts, watch all the YouTube I want or discover the millions of other things that require time/bandwidth to discover.

Once in a while (like last month) I get to the end and there is none left. Its times like these that remind me how truly awesome it is when there is.


Thursday, 1 July 2010

Small things #7 - Getting a Massage

The softly lit room, warm towels, the smell of essential oils. Warm hands, muscles relaxing, for a moment the world and all of your cares drift away.

Unless you have an aversion to touch there is nothing quiet as nurturing to your body and mind as a massage. Its as much about the decadence of a massage as it is about the release of tension and toxins that are stored in tight muscles.

While most of us don't feel with have the money within our budget to spare. We would spend as much on a take away dinner or a new top and not think twice.

And although once you leave the comfort and warmth of the room. The day/week catches up with you. You are left a little lighter and feeling a little more at peace than you were as you walked in. How do you put a cost on that?

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