Monday, January 31, 2011

Jan 31st

Flying home.

Lucy is an incredible traveler. 
Having flown internationally and domestically five times in her four years (the first at three months old), with numerous long car rides, bus rides and train rides (it's all entirely my doing, poor wee button), she not only looks forward to our nomadic wanderings, she seems to really enjoy them!

It helps to have a few tools on-board to help when boredom does eventually kick in *smile*.

Then we found ourselves smack bang in the middle of rush hour traffic on the Monash Fwy.  Only today, an incident had occurred an hour or so before we got there, involving a truck, lots of skid marks and a break in the median barrier.  The lane closures were just reopening as we approached the site of the accident, but up until Huntingdale road, it was a sloooooow crawl.

But we did see a couple of rams on the way!!!  Much to the delight of Lucy and amazement of Ben (not so much the presence of the rams themselves, more the size of the anatomy that identified them to us as rams *wink*)

So a very, very long day of traveling, but it was nice to curl up on the sofa to season one of Alias and drink beer in the comfort of our wee sanctuary *bliss*.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Jan 30th

At the beginning of this year, I sent a message to three women I have gotten to know on line over the past three years or so.  I have never met these women in real life.  I have met them through a homebirthing forum I frequent and of course, facebook. 

In that message, I told them that whatever happened, by the end of this year, I will have wrapped my arms around them and cast my eyes upon them - in the flesh!  The response from all three women was fabulous *smile*.  
One of these women live in rural Victoria, one in Sydney and one in Brisbane.  I live in Melbourne.  So it's not like they are just round the corner *smile*.  As I share quite a lot of my life via facebook, on hearing I was coming to the Gold Coast, my woman-friend from Brisbane instantly messaged me, asking if we were free for a catch up!  I was unbelievably stoked!!

So, with it not even being the end of January, I have my arms around one of my women-friend on my 'to do' list *laugh*. 
Thank you Rachael.  Thank you for making the long drive on a Sunday morning with your four gorgeous children in tow.  Your gift to us of your presence today was so heart-warming.  I knew, I just *knew* we would deepen our connection once we were face-to-face.  We had such a wonderful time with you and your buttons today.  Thank you again *kiss*!

Today is also our anniversary*.  
So after some post-op worries were relieved, we celebrated with Rachael and her children, at the beach, in true French style *smile*. 

*We actually celebrate a four day anniversary.  We discovered our mutual feelings for each other on the 27th, but it wasn't until the 30th when we laid eyes on each other for the first time after the revelation of our new dynamic.  The 30th holds other symbology for us, so this is the most recognised day, but as the 30th only comes around 11 months out of 12, we reserve the right to celebrate on any day from the 27th *smile*.  Makes life easy for getaways too!  A weekend usually falls across that period! *laugh*
 Happy anniversary my sweet beloved.
It's been a rockin' 12 months and I'm unbelievably excited to see what the next has on the agenda!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Jan 29th

Grateful for access to the best surgeons.

  Grateful for the blessings and well-wishers of loved ones.

 Grateful for procedural flexibility, allowing us to visit in post-op recovery.

Grateful for the opportunity to celebrate in style.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Jan 28th

The power of the word 'can't'.

Lu loves the water.  Like most children - stands there shivering, blue lips and still wants to be in it.  Place her in a heated pool in 30 degree temperatures and she's in her element (conditions I much prefer as a mama, to be honest).


Today, we were playing in the kiddies pool.  Lu started bouncing (as you do) and due to the gentle slope of the bottom of the pool, very quickly found herself bouncing with her head almost submerged.  On lifting her up and allowing the spit and water to splutter out, she immediately tells me to put her down (quite sternly actually).

 Now this happened twice!  I am very grateful that it wasn't enough to scare her out of the water (and for my cautious child, this was quite astonishing to me).  Although it really did highlight to me just how helpless she is in the water.  And it scares me.

 So I decided to bring up the issue of swimming.  Learning how to flip and float on her back and a doggie paddle.  She thinks it's all a bit of a joke and tells me flat out "I can't".  Now if there is one word in our vocabulary I abhor, it's the word "can't".  I think it started with my mother saying to me "there's no such thing as can't" - which I will always be eternally grateful to her for instilling in me.

 My own later learnings about the power of manifestation have only strengthened my resolve to remove that word from my vicinity.  I must admit, I badgered Lu a bit this afternoon about practicing.  She continued to grump at me (in between squeals of delight at our play and her environment) and tell me "I can't!".  So I chose to reframe it.

 I asked her not to say "can't" anymore, because she can, it's only that she doesn't want to.  And that's okay.  So, after a couple of reminders, when I asked her to swim, she changed "I can't" to "I don't want to".  Which is a perfectly acceptable answer. 

I want my child to know she can do anything.  Anything at all, if she chooses to and focuses on it.  But I also want her to know that if she doesn't want to do something, then that is perfectly acceptable and must be respected.  So in order to achieve anything you want in your life, you must first change your language.  And there just ain't no place in the business of achieving goals, for the word 'can't'.

And one day, with a little luck (and a smidgen of parental persuasion), Lu may just take me up on my offer of helping her learn to swim *smile*.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Jan 27th

Has intermittently been the bane of my nighttime parenting.
I was blessed with a child who fights sleep (much like her mother actually, far too much excitement going on to sleep!).
A 45 minute wonder from dot.
Now, I say blessed, because there is one personality attribute that I completely missed out on when they were handing them out - and that's patience.  And if there is one thing my darling child has forced me (kicking and screaming) into developing, it's patience.  And children are our greatest teachers, are they not?  Right.  

So yes, I am choosing to consider myself blessed for the lesson in patience.  Cos, in all honesty, if I didn't consider it a blessing, I'd be lamenting my curse!  And that's just not constructive to anyone or anything, now is it?

 Of course, I haven't always been this zen-cum-holier-than-thou with my attitude towards her sleep patterns.  Oh no.  I have done my fair share of whinging, whining, shouting, crying, raging, reasoning, negotiating and more whinging and whining (the whinging and whining mostly to the other parent in the conundrum).  And it never got me anywhere.  Other than more frustrated as I perpetuated my star role in the victimhood play I was conducting (woe is me, boo hoo, how sad, yadda yadda).

To trot out another cliche, there is a lot to be said for time and experience.
The inexperienced, petulant child in me used to get her knickers in a knot and often contribute even more angst to the situation.  Yep, that's gonna help with sleep!  On ya!

Whereas the me of now, developed a new technique several months ago and it works marvelously!
It's topical, because I had to pull it out of my parenting tool kit tonight.

Nighttime routine as follows:
Dinner, drink, last play.
Toilet, teeth.
Story and songs.
Snuggle and sleep.

Except when it doesn't go to plan.
"I'm not tired" "I'm thirsty" "I'm hungry".
So I employ the "okay, I need to go have my dinner now.  I would like for you to relax in bed and let sleep come.  I will check on you soon".
10 minutes later... (you know what's coming, don't you?) pitter patter of little feet.

"Back to bed please.  I will be in there soon"
Now the me of old used to lose it.  Stern voice, frowny face, short, sharp words.
But this is how I deal with it now.
2 minutes later I enter her room, snuggle up beside her and start tickling the beejezus out of her.
"So I see I'm going to have to tickle you to sleep, am I?"
"Are you asleep yet?  What about now?  What about now?"

The oxytocin hormones that flow through both our bodies is delicious.
She gets knackered from laughing and fending me off.
She is awash in hormones of love and says things like "I love you so much, I could crack!" (She actually said this to me tonight! *laugh*)
And I scoop my little bundle of gorgeous goodness into my body and sing her softly to sleep.  Which takes all of about 2 minutes. *smile*

(adding the pic again, cos it's so damn gorgeous!)

So, with time and experience comes the opportunity to reframe a situation, yes?
And for that gift, I am truly grateful.


In other news today, I received a poem from a complete stranger.
Which utterly delighted me!
A new recruit in the workplace sat with me for 90 minutes of on-phone time today, for call training purposes.  At the end of the session, she handed me a piece of paper containing this:

Hope and kindness shining bright
With understanding and patience plenty
Never seems to be surprised when
Help is sought and given freely.
(to be replaced with a pic of the actual poem to come)

A simple, but powerful gesture indicating an appreciation of my work that she witnessed.
Wow.  Just wow. *smile*

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Jan 26th

Australia Day.

This day represents such incredibly opposing things, depending on when you chose to call this country home.  I'm a ring in.  I've called this country home for 11 years now, a citizen for almost eight of those.  I come from a country that also has a violent and manipulative invasion within its history books.  And even though I call that country my homeland, only one half of my bloodline was indigenous.  Meaning the other half is descended from invaders and legalized thieves.

The NZ Maori managed to maintain a lot of their heritage to the present day.  Te Reo is taught in schools, spoken on the streets, and showcases of the culture is a multi-billion dollar tourism industry for NZ.

The same cannot be said for indigenous Australians.  
For them, this day is not about celebrating being Australian.  This day marks the beginning of decades of abuse, violence, death and destruction - of land, homes, family and culture.

So, today holds mixed feelings for me.
Heartache for the people and culture, subjected to so much devastation, still holding on amidst struggle after struggle.  
And gratitude.  To live in a country as beautiful, as opportunistic, as free as Australia is for an educated, white, female immigrant like me.

So what did I do today?

I sat on the sofa - all day - with my British immigrant beloved, drinking wine and watching movies.
Celebrating downtime together.
Celebrating freedom of rights in the country we feel blessed to live in.
Celebrating fine wine and gluten-free pizza.

We broke raw today in outrageous fashion!  Buckwheat pancakes with beans and eggs.

 Drank copious bottles of alcohol.

 Then cleansed our palate later in the evening with strawberry mango sorbet.

 So while I personally don't consider *this* day as a day to celebrate due to the history of bloodshed, I did choose to pay gratuitous thanks to find myself healthy, happy and free in this wide brown land called home.

(PS, apol for the late post.  I couldn't remember my password *blush*)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Jan 25th

Blessed friendships.
Worth more than all the money in the world.

Someone once told me that a true representation of the kind of person you are, is reflected in the type of people who choose to share their lives with you.
In other words, if you want to know what kind of person you are - take a look at the people around you.

This absolutely resonates with my philosophy of like attracts like.
If you are kind, you will attract kindness.
If you choose not to judge, you will attract acceptance.
If you can see humour in life and in yourself, you will attract laughter in abundance.

Which brings me to my friend Georgia.
Five minutes in this woman's company and my laughter is filling the room like liquid sunshine, indicative of the energy she brings with her, wherever she travels.
I have known Georgia almost four years now.  We met while our babes were still in our arms and at our breasts, through our local ABA meet.  Our friendship blossomed over the following years through a mutual passion for gentle parenting and a weekly meet to bask in all things Steiner.  These days, our catch ups tend to be more 'mama-focused' - grown up time, if you will *smile*.

One of the things I utterly adore about Georgia, is her spur of the moment, ready for anything attitude.
I often call her on my way home from work and request the pleasure of her company for dinner.  In all these years, she has only turned me down once! 
To care for her ill babe no less.

Tonight, Georgia once again, gave us the pleasure of her company for dinner.
The menu - raw, naturally.
Yes, it looks suspiciously like our last dinner party (our repertoire of raw could do with a little investment of time and creativity - but hey!  If it ain't broke...!).

I am discovery the pure joy of preparing a meal with love, for loved ones.
I am discovering that that meal does not need to be a five course performance, a la Stephanie Whatshername, in order to satisfy the senses. (What was that book?  Like water for chocolate?)

No.  Simple, vital, nutrient dense food shared with people that make your heart sing, amidst wonderful conversation truly is food to nourish the soul.
Thank you for your company tonight Georgia.
I'm counting the days until we can do it again. *smile*

Monday, January 24, 2011

Jan 24th

We went to the movies tonight.
I utterly ADORE going to the movies - especially to see shows like this!

The singing!  The dancing!  The costumes!
Divine entertainment for the soul.
I just love a show that has me enthralled to the point where my feet are tapping and my body is involuntarily following the movements of the performers.

Which reminds me.
I really do need to get back to yoga.
Watching the thoracic and lumbar spinal flexibility of the dancers, the lack of hamstring adhesions inhibiting full flexion, the cervical spinal side flexions and extensions!  Not to mention the incredible strength in the quadraceps and glutes with all those squats! *sigh*

My current place of body worship is still on holiday hours.  I walk in the door from work at 6.15pm, so their current hours do not work.  Feb 1st seems so long away!

So as I pulled myself heavily out of the movie theatre seat, sweeping popcorn from my lap, it felt like every bone in my body ached in the wanting of flexibility and strength.  It was a delightful reminder to be thankful that yes, while I *am able* to lift myself from my chair, there is always room for improvement.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Jan 23rd

A day to delight the senses!

The remnants of breakfast at our favourite breakfast cafe.

Creative visualisation.
Lucy to an easel, paint and brush: moth to a flame *smile*

Tactile pleasure - for both parties!

The combined sensations of warmth and cool.
The water at 6pm was deliciously tepid.



Appreciation of the exquisiteness of nature - in all its manifestations. 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Jan 22nd

This evening I was confronted with of those 'holy shit!' moments.
We had spent the day lounging around at home, writing, creating, playing.  We were feeling a little bit housebound, so I suggested a ritual of old - fncnb (fish n chips n bubbly) on the beach for dinner.

It seemed like a great idea at the time.
We'd been so *good* after all!  With our raw food intake, our abstinence from alcohol, semi-fasting.  We were feeling so incredible!  My (utterly insane in hindsight) mind was telling me, we deserved a *treat*.

Oh my.
See, that's the thing.  When you initiate a period of eating vital, simple, pesticide et al free, unprocessed foods, your body gets used to it (as with anything).  So then when you re-introduce shite (like alcohol and processed, refined, hydrogenated, deep fried *food*), your body goes into full on two-year-tantrum mode!  "I don't want this!  Get it away from me! Yuuuuuck!  Arghhhhhhh!!!"
As did mine this evening.

It has been a reeeeeally long time since food has prompted me to hurl.  And remember, I ate most of an oyster a month or so ago.  So, 10 seconds after walking in the door, the porcelain bus and I became reacquainted.  Not fun.  Although I felt immensely better afterwards.

But the truly mad thing is.  I have always felt like shite after eating shite (admittedly, never to the point of throwing up before now).  So why, oh why, do I continue to think it's a good idea?  That I'm *rewarding* myself by shoveling this stuff into my body?  Beats me *shrug*.  *sigh*.

I liken myself to the Queen Mary (no, not the Princess people - the ship.)
Lucy's dad introduced me to this analogy.  A huge cruise liner takes a while to slow down.  A while to turn around and a while to get back up to speed in the new direction.
So, I'm seeing myself in the turning around phase.  I just have to keep the pirates trying to gain access intermittently, at bay while I'm currently stationary.
Send me your thoughts of love and encouragement *smile*.

In other non-toilet related news, a few pics from our beach romp this evening.  
Contrary to previously held beliefs, this body *does* run *smile*.

  I hope you and your loved ones are enjoying the sunshine too *smile*
Happy Weekend to you xx