Sunday, 13 December 2015

These are the Days

You know those moments you think about and wait and wonder 'will it ever be as good as I actually think'.

Today was one of those. I introduced Jack to a movie I LOVED in the 90s. I wondered if he would get it and appreciate it the way I did. And OMG he really did.

Parenting is full of these moments. And more often than not they are filled with my apprehension followed by my dismay as the just 'don't get it'.

- Decorating the Christmas tree, nope.
- Introducing Bohemian Rhapsody, not really.
- Watching Aliens, not even scary.
- Playing pool, it doesn't make sense that this is even fun mum.

Watching 'Hackers' one of my favourite 90s movies, this photo says it all. He is totally into it.

Bring on the school holidays, I have many things I hope will be hits. Many will end in me looking at them and wondering 'are you even my children' but it now have a bit of hope that one in 10 will end like this.

Friday, 20 November 2015

In a While Crocodile.

This week I was lucky enough to have a few extra days with the boys. On the first day I asked, due to it corresponding with a day off work, if they would like the day off school? They have been asking for a few weeks for an extra day off and it's something we do regularly but not often. So I figured this day plucked out of the cosmos seemed like the perfect day to say yes.

We had such a lovely day, we bought new art books each and spent a few hours drawing. We had long conversations. Being quite a hot day we went to the pool during school time for a cool down without the crowds, came home ate ice creams, had cool showers, watched movies, drew some more and then all snuggled on the lounge until we were dozy enough to fall asleep and went to bed. It was near on the perfect day.

I woke up this morning to the news of horrendously hot weather coming and I saw a few people were planning on keeping their kids home. As their school isn't air conditioned, I spoke to the kids dad and woot! Another day off. I felt a bit guilty at first, I mean had I known at the beginning of yesterday that today was going to be a day off I wouldn't have done given them yesterday off. But in hindsight I'm so glad I did. And hell they are 9 and 10 and a four day long weekend won't kill them.

Today was another near perfect day, we had a water fight before the real heat kicked in, battened down the hatches, we did more drawing, had more conversations and watched more movies. No one asking to play on the computer, no one arguing in spite of the heat. Too hot for actual cuddles we just spent time cuddling with words and thoughtful actions.

We had just settled in to another movie, art books and/or pompom makers in our laps when I looked at the time.


And my heart dropped. It was almost time for their dad to pick them up and the end of our little staycation.

You see there has been a topic that I have tried to stay away with since the reinvigoration of the blog.


Due to hard work and as much mutual respect as two people who have split up can manage we share the care of the kids.

Generally I have the boys for three weekday nights a week and they are with their dad the other two. We then alternate weekends, and holiday weeks.

And for them it's near perfect. They love the extra time they get with both of us. They talk about it a lot. About their two houses. Their two bedrooms. That their family is bigger now. How they have such different times at each place. They have never once talked about the way our life is now in the negative tense. And to be honest I think that's how they feel 99% of the time.

But every week there is a morning where I drop them at school, we talk about all the fun things they might do at daddy's, how excited I am that they are going to do all the daddy things, have extra hugs, say our goodbyes. I tell them I'll call them every night and see them soon.

I smile a huge smile as I drive away waving and blowing kisses. Then I turn the corner and cry.

Every week it surprises me that it doesn't actually get much easier. I mean sure there are weeks that I'm just a little somber and others where it's really tough. I have tried to pin point why some are harder than others. It doesn't coincide with how long, good times, bad times, it doesn't even coincide with my hormonal fluctuations. It just is.

Today is a tough one. They won't be gone long, just a few days, but as I sit here in the hours since they have left I have a deep ache in my gut that is just telling me 'I miss my boys'.

I think mostly my sadness comes from the idea that, for all foreseeable time I will spend more time than before missing them. These aren't those little breaks where you get to just enjoy a quiet night, or the longer ones where they are doing something unique. This is just a part of my week.

The upside I remind myself is how fantastic is it that they are happy, they have an involved and dedicated father and mother who both really love the time with them (even the cranky insane kid days) and who both miss that craziness when it is gone. Who manage to keep up a relationship with each other that isn't about each other but about our two children. And so on weeks like this week because something unavoidable came up I got extra time with them and in a few weeks for my stuff their dad gets them a bit extra as well. And in the end that means that they are always ok. Always with people who love them. And because of this never missing me nearly as much as miss them.

Friday, 13 November 2015

Who are you Really?

I went through a traumatic experience last year.  It was something that changed me in so many ways that I am still working on it.  It changed the way I felt about myself, it changed the way I saw myself and my worth.  It was such a profound experience that when I mentioned it, in what I thought was an off the cuff way to my shrink she added it to the list of thing to talk about in our sessions. 

I cut my hair ….

Now you may be thinking ummm this is stupid, what a ridiculous thing to have a traumatic experience about.  And you are right.  But it was a lesson that was massive for me because I realise now just how much of my ego and worth was put into my hair. 

My hair was something that I have always received compliments about from everyone including hairdressers.  I have been blessed with hair that quite naturally, is pretty.  If my hair was ok, it didn't matter what I was wearing or how sallow my skin looked, or how old I felt.  It was all pretty much ok.

This is my hair at the beginning of April 2014

It is long.  The back touches around my lower back.  I dye it regularly because as much as the colour of it is ok, it isn't punchy.  So I have bleached the tips a few times, or I dye it in reds and purples to cover the few greys that are coming in.
But I had started to feel a weight from my hair.   It felt boring and I wanted a change.

And then I saw this picture and man, I wanted a light choppy soft hair like this.  It looked fresh and new and I wanted to feel that. So I went to the hairdresser and said cut it, but don't cut it this short.  Just shoulder length, choppy and light like this.  The result was really lovely.

I felt more modern, less flat. It felt a little more mumsy but I didn't have to think quite as much about moisturiser or how often I shampooed it. And it felt lovely.  But that time was relatively short lived.  

I went to the hairdresser again to have it cut back in.  Lesson learnt, do not go to the cheap hairdresser and wind up with the apprentice. I received the worst haircut of my life.  The layers were all wrong.  I had layers that were only a few cms long at my crown.  Bits were standing up so that it looked like I had some weird blended mohawk.  And for the first time in my life my hair didn't feel pretty.  I started wearing a beanie as often as possible just to hide it.  Work was awful because on top of my ugly uniform, I couldn't hide my hair and just had to walk out the door looking like something the cat had dragged in.
  I couldn't rely on it to be the thing that made me feel 'pretty' and my ego just didn't know how to deal with it.  I had never felt quite as low about myself physically as I did with bad hair.  

And then for a derby event I had to dress up like a punk and I did my hair like this.  All slicked to one side and big on the top. And everyone, EVERYONE commented about how amazing my hair looked, and said wow you should shave the side.  And man did my ego need that.  I liked the way it looked as well.  It took that mumsy feeling away. And for the first time my hair didn't feel pretty, or ugly, it felt funky…. I wanted more.

Cut to this … a slightly drunk hilarious night where we decided to shave 1/2 of my head.  Because months of this bad haircut had passed, and my hair still looked terrible and so I figured, if it can't look pretty it may as well be funky, can't get any worse.

I was wrong….

Unless I put a heck of a lot of effort in, and to be honest I have no clue how to put effort in to make hair look good, I had a 1/2 mullet.  It was horrendous.  

And so, as all normal people do when they are having some weird existential crisis … I figured, fuck it and cut it all off.

And straight away I new I had made a MASSIVE mistake.

I complained to those nearest to me and it must have been so boring to listen to.  But what they were listening to wasn't really about my hair, it was about my loss of self, well the part of myself that still needs to walk out the door feeling together, and lets be honest, attractive.  And without my hair being part of that, I just felt plain, no worse than that, I felt ugly.

Ok break time … because I know that reading this could lead you to think that I'm a complete idiot.  and yeah partially you are right.  But we all have these things right? these parts of us that if it was taken away you would feel less.  For me it was hair, but it could be a range of things.  Maybe its going out without makeup, maybe its the way you dress and present yourself.  Maybe being the least smart person in a room would rock your self worth, or being the one that carries a little more weight, maybe you aren't refined enough, maybe you aren't cool enough, maybe you don't have enough money, or enough success, maybe …. well hang on that's the point isn't it … 


And that's why my shrink figured it was worth putting on the list.
But lucky for me I had already realised it.  It wasn't about a bad haircut, it was about taking away something that made me feel enough when I walked out the door. And thank goodness I realised it when I did because the next step would have been me shaving my head.

Today I have a short bob.  I have this weird piece that won't grow fast enough and keeps bugging me and I still often look in the mirror trying to figure out how to fix my hair.  I still wear a beanie when I just can't deal with the madness or just because they are cool.  But now I try and remind myself that my hating my hair is just a symptom of me probably needing to love more things about myself.  And some of the time it works.  I no longer hate that my hair doesn't look pretty.  Sometimes, although it's still rare I'm even thankful for that stupid haircut.  The biggest thing is sometimes I think I can still be beautiful without my hair. 

Now don't get me wrong, I have at least another 15 things that play on my mind when I go to walk out the door, but I hope now that now I have survived the haircut I can use those lessons to deal with of those parts of me that tell me I'm not enough.

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

The Pom-Pom Theory

Does anyone remember that day that I had the pom-pom epiphany? 

It's funny you know, I think about it a lot.  That idea that I was ever silly enough to think that I could be these wonderful together loops of wool, when I am, in my natural state obviously a random, colourful, slightly unconventional all the while still being wonderful pom-pom.  That day 5 years ago was  something that was quietly life changing.  Not long afterwards I spoke to my shrink about it and after a few more sessions we both realised that the pom-pom didn't need her anymore.

Well today I had another epiphany.  I am still trying to be those loops of wool…..

See owning being a pom-pom was easy for me when times were smooth, but if life is tough I long, I fight, I turn myself inside out trying to be those glorious loops of wool.

FYI if you are lost and have no idea what the hell I'm talking about you might want to read the above link :)

It's been a challenging time for the last while. My relationship of 15 years broke down, suddenly I had to stand on my own two feet by myself for the first time in my life.  I made a new relationship and had to explore that, not just by myself but with my children.  I started working so much that I had to learn to find balance between work and parenting, needing the children more than the wage, but needing the wage so that I could parent in a place of safety.  I sold a house, and as we all know for me that was more than just selling a house.

Challenging …. on almost every important life level.

And so my natural reaction was to put my head down, my bum up, ride the wave, breathe, walk forward even when I wasn't sure where the road would lead, and pretty much any other analogy you can imagine.  Keep it together, be safe, be calm.

And as I did that, I forgot to be a pom-pom.  Because who want's the fluffy randomness of being a pom-pom when life feels fluffy and random.  Fuck it, I didn't just want I NEEDED to be those damn loops of wool.

And then …. I needed my shrink again.

The expectations and bars I had set for myself were to high, to unachievable, to limiting, to stringent, to measurable.  I forgot to forgive myself the things that I love about the pom-pom … about myself.

I can be messy, impractical, forgetful, stressed, sad, joyous, inappropriate, disorganised.  I can laugh too loud and long, I can cry from the depths of my soul for no reason at all.  I trip, bump, stub, and smack.  I dance and sing whenever wherever I feel it.  I yell and swear and overreact.  I parent from a place of joyous abandon and crazy make it up as I go, never asking if anyone else thought it was ok and if I make mistakes I apologise to them and myself and move on.

Forgetting that has meant more than just forgetting to be myself.  I have put the 'small things' to one side.  I have been terrible in keeping up old friendships, I have actively given myself barriers against any new friendships.  I stopped derby because that kind of dedication was beyond me.  I stopped writing, singing, drawing, reading.  Communication that required a thought out response took me days. Plucking my eyebrows became a luxury.  And if I'm really honest, sometimes I was too busy keeping it all together to remember to laugh with the boys.

Those who love me understood but also became further away.  Not because they wanted to but because sometimes you just can't keep being the only one trying to stay together.

I hope todays epiphany helps me rebalance.
I hope I remember just exactly what kind of mum I want to be.
I hope my friends are still open to me.
I hope that talking with my shrink takes out the 'I hope' and turns it into the 'I will'.
I hope I find my pom-pom again.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Big Brother Being

It's hot. For the some of us who revolt at the winter months, this weekend has been a god send.

Sure it's come with extra bugs in the house and needing to remember where the sunscreen is, searching for the clothes you wore last summer and thinking, what the hell was I thinking. But it's awesome. And for relief it also comes with trips to the pool.

This afternoon after school we packed the kids and a friend up and headed down to our favourite pool for our first early evening cool off for the year.

After a lovely dip I jumped out and lay down in the shade watching them play and jump and splash. I grabbed my book and started reading. As a side note oh my how lovely it is now that everyone can swim comfortably and I only need to look up every 5 minutes not every 5 seconds.

After I'd read a whole 5 pages I lifted my head to put my eyes on the boys. And straight away I saw Jack. He was bouncing around at the top end of the pool but seemed perplexed. Then I saw Hamish and the friend at the other end. 1..2..3 all accounted for.

But I didn't put my nose straight back into my book, I looked back at Jack wondering what he was doing.

And then I realized, he couldn't see his brother. He was bouncing to get a better look at the heads in the pool trying to see where he was. Finally he caught him in his sights, relaxed, and slowly paddled around by himself again. He didn't rush up to play with him. He just needed to know he was ok so he could go back to what he was doing.

It's another one of those 'raising siblings' things that as an only child my brain can't process. I felt in equal amounts, pride and concern.

Proud that he is the kind of brother that wants to care for his little brother. The kind of person that at 10 and being in the middle of something he is enjoying still thinks of others. And concern that that want to care is stopping him being able to be carefree.

It's normal, I know that, but understanding that sense of responsibility at such a young age is foreign to me and leaves me with so many questions.

Will this tendency help him in life, yeah probably, but I find myself wondering, will it also hold him back? Will he learn the balance between giving, but not so much he gives more than he should? Will he resent that he feels this way? Will he retaliate at some point as he breaks free from a pressure he may feel? Will he notice that his little brother doesn't have the same need to make sure he is ok? If he does will he resent that? Or is it just maybe a totally natural normal healthy and lovely part of being the older brother?

It takes a village they say, to raise a child. I didn't ever think that maybe part of my village would be him.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Conversations with a 10 Year Old

Bedtime is one of my favourite parts of the day. It's the time my 10 and 9 year olds become little snuggly babies again. They want to talk. And not about what we did today but deep beautiful talking. Last night they wanted to talk about when they were born and I happened to mention that when they were babies I used to wonder about what kind of kids they were.

Jack: Well what kind of kids did you think we would be?

Me: It's hard to remember but I can tell you one thing, and maybe all parents think this. When you were babies I didn't ever imagine that if you weren't my kids and I met you at 10 and 9 I'd think you were really cool. What makes me so happy is that even if you weren't my kids, I'd still want to be your friends. I don't just love you to the moon and back, I like you both, I like the kids you are and the men you are becoming.

Jack: The thing is mum, I don't think other parents think that and if they do they should make sure they say it.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

The Art of Being Alone

One of my favorite times of the year are the school holidays. They are filled with lazy mornings. Interesting chats. And doing things that we usually don't find the time to do during the busy term.

But there is a downside.

There are often days of arguing between the kids as they spend so much extra time with each other. They will be sitting quietly doing something together and then suddenly out of the blue they are running through the house screaming my name as someone did something to the other and normally it comes to a head with someone getting an 'accidental' foot to the face.

Once I have soothed things (often with kisses and ice packs) they find each other again. And then soon after ... They are running through the house screaming my name as another accidental foot to the face. At some point I find myself yelling at them "separate and find something else to do".

And they do for all of five minutes before we start the whole process again.

Yesterday was one of those days. And after the crying had finished I had an epiphany.

See doing things by myself has always been pretty easy for me. I'm an only child and learnt early how to be alone and entertain myself. But they have always had each other. They had never learnt the art of being alone.

So today we try something new.

I got them to write out some things they could do by themselves that didn't include devices or tv or me or each other.

And in rotation today they are spending time doing these things. Then we are doing an activity together. And then they can do whatever they want (probably screen time). These are all happening in equal proportions and we will be doing it all day.

So far we have played a game of scrabble together. Now it is alone time. The first thing they did was both go outside. One to play with their ball the other to practice on their skateboard. I could hear them chatting away. And although the mood was light it defeated the purpose. So reminded them that one of the rules is separate spaces.

The big one decided to go to his room to read for a bit. And the little one decided to cook us a meal.

I don't know if this will work. But as I say to the boys my first job as a mum is to love them. And my second job is to teach them. To teach them the skills they need for life. To make them healthy men and productive citizens. Today I am hoping to teach them how to be alone.

Upside is we have just completed the first alone hour. Energy here is calm. Although I just got served a raw chicken schnitzel 1/2 a chopped up apple and a mandarin at 9am my hopes are high.

Note: the above photo is not mine. Tiff took it and it is one of my all time favorites of the boys.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Tit for Tat

I gave the real estate agent the keys. The real estate agent gave me a bottle of wine. Seems fair.

And I guess it is.

Funny how the mind processes things. I'm not at all a materialistic person but moving on from this house is continuing to be a bit of a struggle. I won't bore you with the details but let's just say that this morning as I went to the house for the last time all I could think was:


I wandered around for about 5 minutes feeling all teary and pathetic and then someone knocked on the door. It was the new owner. So to add to my already slightly pathetic demeanor, I grabbed her gave her a massive teary cuddle and said 'welcome to your new home'.

We then wandered around while I talked about the house and the street. Introduced her to the joys of outside toilets and holes in the ceiling. Mostly I told her how special the place that was very soon (6 hours to be precise) going to be hers was.

She asked a lot of questions and then if it was ok that she and I have a photo together out the front of the house that she would send to me. I smiled and hugged her for the photo. Inside I didn't feel much like smiling but I was glad to have met her and even felt pleased to hear how much she was looking forward to the house.

The real estate agent arrived and she handed me a bottle of wine and I handed her the keys. She watched me lock it up, making sure I couldn't get back in and we all drove away.

So now 6 hours later it is no longer mine. Settlement happened 30 minutes ago and I still wanna go home.

But it will pass and this will be my last sad sack house post. Tomorrow it's all about the new place and the life we are building here. Or maybe the blog could take a break in talking about houses in general. Either way, today the real end has happened and the next phase actually begins.

Friday, 21 August 2015

So Long and Thanks for all the Fish

This morning I sit in the sun with my cup of coffee. I'm listening to the birds and the dogs quietly snoring in the sun. The kids playing, my neighbour talking and the rumble of the traffic. It's a beautiful day and I am so very sad. 

Tomorrow morning bright and early a bunch of friends will be here, we will pop a bottle of champaign and toast to a day that will be hard work, physically for them and emotionally for me. 

Tomorrow we move ....

Last night I made us sleep with the doors to the balcony open. I have always loved hearing the quiet moans of the city as I sleep on hot summer night. But there are no more nights left for us here.

The new place will be lovely but I am allowing myself this day to just feel totally and utterly mournful. I am paying attention to everything. 

The drip of the shower sounds like the most wonderful of sounds. The cracks in the walls look like intricately perfected designs ... Today everything looks perfect and beautiful and mine. Because tomorrow my home is no longer my home and a week from now I won't even be able to walk in the door. 

Yes home is where the heart is and as long as those boys are with me it will be my home but it won't be this home. This home that I have loved and worked on, dreamed in and of, spent 1000s of hours cocooned inside its walls. Feeling safe. And comforted. 

And no matter how much I cry or how loud the voice inside my head begs for it not to be true .... Tomorrow we move .... 

Sunday, 26 July 2015

And the Winner is ...

Yesterday was a good day. We all drove up to Avalon to see the best evil step mother in the world. Had a bite to eat and then afterwards we popped to the park to let the kids run of some energy.

Bec came up with a game to help them exhaust themselves. The kids had to run an obstacle course that entailed running down the hill and stairs, around the bins, over the climbing frame at the park, and back up the hill.

The boys had two goes and then they asked me to have a go. So I did.

Now there are two things about me that the older I get the more I have to realize. Although I think it's something that those who know me well have known for a while.

1. I don't like to loose
2. I especially don't like to loose to the kids.

1/2 of it is an only child thing I think and the other is also that I'm just not ready for the kids to overtake me .... yet.

So all dressed up for lunch I stood on top of the hill ready to go. It wasn't until later that I though, jeez that probably looked pretty insane to all of the other parents in the park who were chatting over coffees in their sports clothes. Watching me belt down the hill, climb over the climbing frame and run about as fast as I ever have up the hill all so I could beat an 8 and 10 year old at their own game.

But who cares. The above photo is of Bec and I celebrating my beating the kids not once but twice.

Could I breathe ... Nope
Did I want to vomit ... Yep
Did I win .... Yeah baby I did, twice!

My 'mummy is the strongest, fastest, hilarious and most outlandish mummy in the world' persona is still standing strong.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Lounge Suit

I love a chair ...

Actually let me be clearer, I love a free chair. You know those random chairs you see on the side of the road with a leg missing? I'm probably going to pull over and have a look to see if I can make it work.

Especially lounges. Oh my how I love a lounge (free lounge).

People have them going for free when they move, they are on the side of the road, they are at Vinnies for $20 and all I think is 'ohhhh I'm sure I can make that work, we don't really need that desk/wardrobe/bed.

Until 4 weeks ago when one finally made its way into a skip, my teeny little house had 5 lounges. And a few months before that, for a short time, I had 6.

So let's be clear, I know I don't need another lounge.

But last week there was a person from an online group I am part of giving away a lounge. It was awesome and exactly what I wish at least 1 of my lounges looked like. So I said I would take it. By the time she saw my response she had contacted a charity and they were going to take it. I figured 'they need it a lot more than me, so that's great'.

Then yesterday she messaged me and said 'hey do you still want that lounge'. WOOT!!!

I got the messages a few hours after it was sent but as soon as I saw it I replied that yes I still wanted it and could she remind me what it looked like (ok yes I have a lounge problem).

I waited by the phone and finally the response came through.

'Oh sorry I've given it to someone else'


So my lesson in this, if someone offers you a free lounge and then takes it away and then offers it again and then takes it away AGAIN, you probably don't need another lounge and the universe is telling you to get over it or get help.

Still .... Anyone got a lounge they are getting rid of let me know.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Conversations with a 10 year old.

Talking with Jack about a family we know that have just come back from 6 months traveling around Australia in a bus.

Me: That's something I think about a lot. I'd love for us to travel around Australia for a year. What do you think?
Jack: Mum I've got to be honest, I don't think I've got that in me.
Me: How are we even related?

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Dinner Selfies

Jack loves to cook and one of his plans for these holidays was to cook muffins. As with all best laid plans, it didn't happen. Every time we had time, friends would pop in or another activity seemed far more interesting. Tonight he decided to cook dinner.


Him cooking dinner was cool. He had specific ideas about the salad and how to plate it but the best part for me wasn't the eating it was the conversations as I watched and he made. I sat on the bench waiting for bits to be ready and he really openly chatted about so many things.

So tonight's dinner is southern style chicken, kale and potato salad with a balsamic mustard dressing.

I am full to the brim ... And I haven't eaten yet. But my heart and mind over this kid may explode.

FYI Hamish totally cooked dinner with Bec last week. I knew I had no patience left to make Beef Larb. So Bec did it. I kind of regret it now. Next time I'll fight for the time.

FYI Beef Larb probably not the best starter dish but we all chewed out way through it. Except for Hamish.

Monday, 13 July 2015

This Old Man

I don't talk much about my dogs on here.  I have two. The white one: a 13 year old fluffy mid sized mongrel female named Flynn and the brown one: a 15 year old large German shorthaired pointer male named Oscar. 

The reason I haven't talked about them much is because they became 'just dogs'. Before the kids were born every movement, every house we moved to, every holiday, everything was about them. And then I had babies and they were still loved but not everything like they had been. 

And so their watch began. 

They stood by the kids and I as we moved our lives around them. They have at times been a burden of worry and time. But also provided us with so much love and protection they are as much a part of our family as the humans. 

But now they are old ... Not just a little grey but both of them, end of life old. 

She has had some kind of brain event that I think is a stroke.  She is still happy, eating and drinking normally but her tongue doesn't work as well as it used to so she has terrible breath at times and drools more.  Sometimes she goes a bit bonkers for an hour or two and then comes back to her normal self. 

He is covered in lumps. Some are just fatty but some I am sure is cancer. Same as her he is still happy and pain free but he is also quite deaf and blind and as he has gotten older he is far more stubborn. 

Oh and they have both started weeing the bed occasionally in their sleep ... Fun times. 

The thing is I made them two promises. 

1. They would live a good life with us till the end of their days. 
2. Seeing that they were so old already I would do as little intervening as possible. Just making sure they are pain free and happy. 

When looking at selling our house I knew I had to find somewhere that they could live with us. For a moment this looked nearly impossible. Finding houses in this area in my budget meant looking further away from the boys school or in locations that weren't very nice or safe feeling.   But the universe was on our side and we found one that hit all of the buttons for the humans and the dogs.   

So these days I find I have a bit more time for them.  They are more everything than they have been in a long while.  I want to let the lay on the lounge with me, something that was absolutely forbidden for most of their lives. I want to watch them fall asleep with their heads in my lap. I let them stay inside when it's cold even if we are out.  Stroke their velvety soft ears. Kiss them on their noses. Because I can see that this next move will probably be the last house they live in and I just can't imagine what life without these stinky stupid loving protective dogs would be like. 

And so my watch begins. 

Friday, 10 July 2015

The View from Over There

Ok I admit it! Sometimes I am SUCH an only child. I like my stuff to be mine. I can share!! ... when I want to. But I have mini tantrums in my head when people touch my stuff. I can't stand it when the kids use my towel. And my bedroom is a no go zone. But nothing brings out the wrath quite the same way as people in 'my spot'. Even the kids know when I walk in that they should move off my spot and find somewhere else to sit. It's a thing ... And yup I love it.

When we were getting the house ready for open houses we had to have a massive clear up and out. I have a thing for clutter. And an obsession with chairs. In fact in our tiny house we have 5 lounges and 8 other sitting devices.

So to make this tiny house look more spacious we rearranged the lounge room, study and studio to make it all feel like you don't have to dodge furniture to live here. This meant moving one lounge out of the lounge room and moving the other to another spot to highlight how 'huge' (tiny) it was.

After we had finished I suddenly looked at Bec and broke into tears. We had moved everything around and I had suddenly lost 'my spot'. I hadn't even paid attention. Just came in after a hard day's rearranging and boom ... it was gone.

It's been an uncomfortable few weeks. Although we grabbed some bean bags for the kids. The truth is 4 people can't snuggle in and chill on a three person lounge and bean bags just don't cut it.

Today I moved the room back to how it was (upside of having sold it). Well actually I moved my lounge back into its spot and am waiting for Bec to come home to grab the other.

And about an hour ago, I sat back in my spot. I feel renewed and if anyone tries to sit here I'm totally going to spazz out.

Small things right.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

The Big Non Event

For 6 weeks I have known that on the 11th of July our home would be going to auction. It is a totally unwanted sale by me but it's time and I know that.

I had these pictures in my head of standing in the sun across the road with most of the neighbors Andrew Bec the kids and listening as we waited and watched people bid on 'The Big Day'. There would be laughter and that would help me hold back my tears and afterward we would pop a bottle of sparkling wine and toast to our lovely house and the people who decided to buy it from us. To the many many happy years and moments we have had here.

But yesterday with what felt like a whisper instead we sold our home.

It was the right decision. Absolutely and unequivocally the right decision. But it feels like a dream, like a mistake. Until I walk outside and see that big red sticker across the board that reminds me, yes it will be someone else's soon.

I decided to stay quiet about the price. This little street has a way of being nosy and in your face but no one asked. And I was glad. But as my neighbor and I sat out the front last night with all the kids having a movie night inside a stranger walked into our street. We smiled at him and said 'it's a dead end' because so many people walk in thinking they can walk out the other way. He looked at us crossly and said 'I know it's a dead end, I came to see the house that sold for $..... today' and then he looked at the sold sticker on the board and said 'was it this? Shit!' And walked out again. I guess it's the universes way of making sure I didn't have to answer the question.

So that's it. I've woken today feeling heavy and like I'm in a dream. I know good things will come, I really do. But for now I'm going to continue walking down my hall touching the walls. Thinking of how every single inch of this house inside and out are places I have touched fixed and loved for 13 years.

From a dream I had, to buying it, to birthing in it, to pulling bits down and putting them back again, to all of the plans, to the boys planning on keeping it forever, to the years of children running and climbing on it, to gatherings with loved ones .... Cheers old house. We have loved you so much. Thank you for keeping us safe.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Conversations at Home

Last night while reading an article about a semi famous persons 10 favorite things.

Me: Monogramed cocktail napkins!! apparently she likes to have them ready for when friends drop by.

Bec: If our friends are lucky we might have a clean T-towel for them to dry their hands.

Me: If they are lucky we will have a box of tissues and not be down to kitchen roll when we run out of toilet paper.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Wondering What?

Keeping a blog is, realistically highly self indulgent. Especially ones like this one. Basically it's a pouring of my brain and life into a virtual diary that I am happy for others to read.

It's also like therapy. It keeps me writing, which keeps me thinking. And often as I think about what I am going to write and make sure it's clear for others to read, my thoughts become clearer.

I asked a friend recently if I should restart my blog and her answer was a resounding 'no'. Then I put it out to a wider audience and although the feelings were mixed, 'yes do it' was the most common response. And as someone wisely said 'I'm obviously not done with it yet'.

Once that was decided I wondered if starting something new and fresh was a good idea. But although everything is so different from when I started this blog. It's all still me. Still us.

So here goes ....

The catchup:

Version 1 of this blog was me, a stay at home mum with two little boys. We lived in a funny little house that I dreamed of renovating and spent a lot of time figuring out how to make this already perfect (to me) house more perfect for us.

Version 2 didn't stay around long. It was 9 posts after a years hiatus. I was entrenched in the derby world. Had started working part time as those little boys were now at school. And I still had high plans to one day start the renovations that were now in black and white.

Version 3 starts today. It's been almost two years since my last post. Am now mother to 9 and 10 year old boys. Their dad and I separated a year and a bit ago and now the boys and I live with my girlfriend Bec. The boys dad and I are selling this lovely house because although we share the boys it's just not something you can do with a house. So the boys Bec and I have signed a lease for a little house not far away that is almost as old as my current place but is blessed with an inside toilet and enough space for two boys and two now ancient dogs.

I still work at my little part time job but do many more hours. It means I can pick up the kids on the days they are with me and knock out more hours when they are with their dad.

I also don't derby anymore. I got hurt, and I got scared of getting hurt again because these days, so much more than before if I get hurt things would become very hard. So after almost three years I have taken a break, for how long I honestly don't know.

Well that's it, for the moment. Post 1 of version 3 of this funny little space which has been a part of my life for 9 years. I hope I find the time and energy to write often. And to keep up with it for a few more than 9 posts. But no promises.
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