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Posts Tagged ‘thoughts’

Two moments I will share with you:

A while ago, maybe a couple of months, it was after lunch and I was in a bad mood. It had been a long week in the house, lots of rain which meant not much outside play time and I was feeling cramped and suffocated within these walls. It was no one’s fault, Alice was sleeping, Estelle busy playing in her room. I was hanging clothes inside the house on the airer hoping to finally get some wet laundry dried. For the last 20 mins, Estelle had been running back and forth between the kitchen and her bedroom, I could hear her digging through the jumble in the tupperware drawer but didn’t pay any attention to it. My nerves were on edge, I felt snappy and dark and impatient. I decided I’d had enough, get me out this house and to the shops! Anywhere!

Alice woke up and I quickly got her changed, grabbed a nappy bag and called out, “come on Estelle, let’s get in the car”. I waited. And waited. A hot angry monster started stirring inside my belly. “Come on! I’m waiting!”. She called out to me, “I’m nearly ready mum”. I stood there for another minute letting the flames of anger spark up, take light and engulf me. I don’t know why I was so cranky, I just was. It felt good to be cranky, so I was.

Estelle emerges from her bedroom, a beautiful smile from ear to ear, slowly and ever so carefully balancing in her arms our Tupperware ice block set. She had gone through the drawer and found the tray, every container, stick and lid and put them all together. She says, “Mummy I make us dessert”. She made her way to the fridge, opened the door and put it on the shelf.

My heart melted. I thought, who do I think I am? What was so important that I couldn’t check to see what she was doing first? Why am I behaving so horribly?

If someone was yelling at me down the hallway the way I had, I certainly wouldn’t come out with a smile on my face!

……………………………………….

We were leaving soon for playgroup, Estelle was dressed and ready, I was busy dressing the baby and packing up all our stuff to take.

I gave her the countdown, ” 5 minutes until we leave, darling”.

I raced around tidying the house, packing the morning tea, and all those other things that must be done.

“Let’s brush your teeth now please”, waiting….no answer. I could hear her chattering away in her room.

I went in to her room, “Come now please!”

She burst into tears, “I don’t want to go, leave me home!”

I sat down and softened myself. I tried to understand what she would be feeling.

Here she is, sitting in her room with all her dolls lined up in a row and the basket of dolls clothes emptied. She is carefully sorting through it, matching the outfits and dressing her babies.

I asked her which doll she would like to bring with us and what she would like them to wear. She chose her girl Jessie and the ballerina dress. We had a hug and talked about the fun things we would do at playgroup and what friends she was looking forward to seeing. She got up with Jessie in her arms and went into the bathroom. I followed her, feeling grateful that I was able to meet her need in that moment. I got it right for once!

Sometimes I find the huge emotions of a three year old exhausting. It’s hard to keep up. I read this blog the other night and it reminded me of something, that tantrums and outbursts are outward expressions of inner confusion. I knew this, but needed reminding.

What is 5 minutes to a three year old? Why would I tell Estelle we’re leaving in 5 minutes and expect her to come when I tell her to? She has no comprehension of time like this.

What could be so important that I can’t go in and see what she’s doing first? She is completely absorbed in her world of play, every game is so real. How can I pull her from this world without first meeting her there?

I am so grateful for, and always amazed at the unlimited forgiveness from a child. And also hopeful that I can be open and willing to change my attitude when I need to.

No persons work is more important than anothers. Whether it be making imaginary iceblocks or performing brain surgery.

Both just as real and just as meaningful to the people involved.

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Lately I have been sick of all the ‘stuff’ hanging around the house gathering dust. You know all that stuff you think you need before you have the first baby, but once they arrive it turns out you don’t really NEED any of it?! I decided it was time to cull all the things I had been saving just in case. If I haven’t used it in the last two months, it’s gone!

These are the things I couldn’t live without:

My ergo baby carrier.

This photo was taken a few months ago, Alice was about 4 months then. It doesn’t matter though, it’s pretty much exactly how she looks now when she’s in the Ergo too! I love my ergo because I can have that sweet, fluffy little head close enough for a kiss while doing the housework, shopping or anything else I need my hands free for. I would say it’s Alice’s favourite place to be, tucked away in her pouch, experiencing the world from the safety and closeness of mummy’s arms. So everyone’s a winner. Awesome!

My stick blender.

I probably could live without this one if I wanted to mash everything with a fork or push it through a sieve, but who has time for that? This makes baby food so quick and easy to make, pureed in seconds. It makes life so much easier to have a few meals in the freezer. Frozen apple or pear cubes are great to add to hot porridge, I just pop the frozen cube in when the porridge is cooked and stir it through to defrost which also cools the hot porridge to a suitable temperature. Then it’s ready to eat straight away without having to wait. Nothing worse than a hungry baby and the food is too hot. Of course they taste good on their own too. I will often mash up whatever vegies we are having for dinner for Alice to eat, but it is always good to have freezer meals to call on if dinner is running late or we’re having something unsuitable for her. Best of all, I know what’s in it. Definately no preservitives or added sweeteners or anything nasty and it’s SO much cheaper than buying jarred food. I don’t find it any more difficult to be out and about with home made baby food (actually I can’t compare because I don’t buy jarred food), I just put a few cubes into a container and pack it into a tiny cooler bag with my spoon and bib when I leave in the morning and it’s defrosted and ready to eat by lunchtime. Easy.

My bumgenius nappies.

After trying a few different cloth nappying options, I have found these to be very reliable and easy to use. Although I do use a different nappy for night (baby beehinds bamboo fitted) these are the best ‘work horse’ nappy I have tried. I have saved sooo much money by using cloth, and they look pretty cute too! The environmental factor was also a big decider for me, did you know that every disposable nappy ever used is still sitting in landfill somewhere breaking down? Poor earth. It’s really not much more washing, a load every second day, which I don’t really notice with all the laundry I do anyway.

So I think that’s it. Those three things are the only things I actually need, aside from some clothing. As you can see in the last pic there, the baby makes her own fun with pretty much anything around the house. Toys are fun but so is everything else! Didn’t need the baby bath, she prefers to have a bath with her sister. I also didn’t need the mountain of clothes she grew out of before she wore them twice. Of course i did keep a few other items that we use (such as the highchair), but these are my favourites.

As I go through life I’m learning that it’s always best to simplify!

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I just saw that this will be my 55th post on this here blog I started a few months ago! I had a big smile about that because before I started blogging I honestly thought I would have nothing to say. But it seems I did have a few things bouncing around in my head, enough to write 55 blog posts in fact!

To be honest, I very rarely know what it is I am going to write about when I finally get a moment to myself at night to sit down and write. I usually just sit for a moment, feel my feelings, think about my day or flick through the recent photos on my camera and see what comes to mind. I think if I planned ahead it would take away the honesty of the moment. Taking hold of an idea and just running with it allows me to be grounded in the moment and write exactly how I feel and what I think about something. (justifying my disorganisation?? 🙂 )

I remember that I found it quite confronting at first to share things that are close to my heart. The fear almost stopped me in my tracks. What if people judge me? What if people don’t like what I’m writing? What if my writing isn’t good enough? Does anyone really care what I have to say? And on and on…

Fear. It can cripple you. Although a good and healthy dose of fear can sometimes be exactly what you need. Feeling the fear, then doing it anyway. Is there anything more satisfying? Sometimes the things that make you feel the most vulnerable can also be the things that bring you the greatest reward. I found it difficult to share my feelings so openly, I really felt like I was going out on a limb. (Here is a little piece of my heart, what are you going to do with it?) But I have gained so much by just taking the leap, putting my words out there, and have really appreciated the encouragement I have received from people. I hope that I have maybe offered some encouragement to others through my words.

At first, I did feel pressure to maintain the blog. But now I have learnt to stick to my priorities. The blog is the first thing that misses out on my limited time. I will write when I can, when it suits and I have the desire. It is supposed to be enjoyable after all!

So anyway, I’m so glad I didn’t cave to the fear. I like writing my blog, this place where I can vent. I mean, can you imagine what it was like living in my head with all of these thoughts bouncing around? So truthfully, I do it for myself. It’s my own personal confession. (Not that I have ever been to confession, but I imagine that it is relieving to get things off your chest, like I do here) Thanks for reading!

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Death is hard to comprehend. We all know what death is. With the last breath the spirit leaves the body, the body left behind nothing but an empty vessel.

But on a day to day level, it’s so hard to imagine never seeing someone again.

Never again will I sit at the table with Ernie and have a cuppa, go into the garden with him to admire the roses he was so proud of, listen to him tell my nanna she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen (he loved to make her blush in front of everyone).

Ernie came into our lives nearly five years ago. My nanna started talking about this man who she had become friends with. He had been taking her out to lunch and coming to her place for dinner. We started lovingly teasing her about this new toy boy (she was 82, he was 80) who was taking her away from us! If one thing is true, it’s that love knows no age. Their friendship blossomed and soon they were like a pair of love struck teenagers. After both being widowed for over 30 years, they had each found their soul mate. Ernie being an old fashioned gentleman decided it would never do to live together without being married first, so he proposed and she accepted. At their wedding there was not a dry eye to be found. Nanna walked down the aisle to the music playing, “I finally found someone, someone to share my life”. Such a special day.

These two love birds spent every moment with each other. I will never forget this day when Luke and I went to visit, we had been there the week before helping Ernie move his things into the unit and had set up the lounge room for them. Ernie told us he didn’t like the way we set it, he wanted his recliner to be closer to Nan’s so he could hold her hand while they watched TV! Ernie had a great sense of humour and loved to tell a story. He settled into our family as though he had been there all along. It made us all so happy to see Nanna so content, fulfilled and to have someone to share life with.

Ernie had never been sick in his life, so it was a great surprise to us all when 5 months ago he was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. His quick decline was so difficult to witness and difficult for him to understand. He spent the last few months of his life in hospital and I will never forget walking into the room with Nan and seeing big, lonely tears rolling down his cheeks the moment he laid eyes on her. He missed her so much. And she missed him. She would sit next to him on the bed and wrap her arms around him and he would say, “I still think you’re the loveliest woman in the world”.

It feels so unfair, they are still newly weds! I have so much sadness for my nan, saying goodbye to her precious companion. But she is the one with a smile despite the tears, telling us that she is so grateful to have had his love and to have made the last years of his life the best ones. I hope that I one day have even a portion of her courage and amazing attitude.

Today we said our final goodbye’s.

It’s not about the quantity of life but the quality.  Quality of life is measured in memories, not years.

Remember to make the everyday things special.

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At this very moment, these are some of my favourite things.

This little monkey’s curiosity teamed with her quickly developing capabilites is keeping me on my toes!

She loves to open the doors of the buffet and ‘sort out’ the contents for me. And reorganise the book shelf or tupperware drawer or my fabric scraps into  messy piles.

It’s one of my favourites because it reminds me to not take things (or myself) too seriously.

Also to remember that the world is an exciting place to be, something I often forget.

Our weeks are quite full at the moment.

This makes our quiet days at home feel so much more precious.

Time spent hanging out, just being a kid (me included) is refreshing. Like a big, exhaling breath.

This oregano is now my only growing herb. It is the lone survivor of a brutal herb garden attack involving Estelle and two hungry guinea pigs.

I guess now as it’s my only, it will be my favourite too!

I love feeling the change in the air. The evenings closing in a little earlier, the cool breath of autumn slowly making itself known.

It reminds me of all the energy that surrounds me. I am energy within this greater cosmic energy, and the rhythms of the seasons and life on this earth flow through us. It makes me feel alive and part of something. It makes me feel insignificant, but in a comforting way. No matter how big my worries may seem, the wind still blows, the earth still turns, the sun still sets, the stars still shine. It’s easier to let it all go. To not waste my energy on the wrong things. To find peace in the rhythm and cycles of nature.

Lastly, and definately one of my favourite things, Sunday afternoon naps.

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Lately my heart has been so very full.  There seems to be so much happening all around me.

Around the world there is so much devastation, such monumental loss of life. Nations have been destroyed by nature’s power. My mind reels, not able to comprehend the reality of living through a situation such as an earthquake or tsunami. I feel so far removed, but my heart feels heavy for my fellow human beings.

Then closer to home, a member of our family faces the last battle of his life.

Always, there are the stresses that come along with day to day life. Financial stresses, the sleep deprivation that seems to go hand in hand with my teething baby, feeling like sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day!

There is one thing that helps to keep it real for me. It brings me out of the fog when I need clarity, makes my world a wonderful place to be.

That thing is gratitude.

It helps me to be present in the moment.

Sometimes, I’ll be standing at the sink washing up with my mind racing . My body is on earth, but my mind is teetering on the edge of atmosphere. I take a breath and remember what I’m doing. I’m here washing dishes. I’m thankful that we had food to eat.  That we own a home, with dishes to eat from.

It helps me to change my attitude.

Sometimes, I’m sick of all the dirty laundry. It never ends. (I swear the dirty socks breed under the cover of night) So when I’m dreading hanging out the fourth load of laundry for the day, I go out to the line, take a breath and say to myself whilst pegging up the (seemingly) hundredth little sock, ” I love these little feet. I am so grateful they are strong and healthy and can run around in the garden”. And then it also makes me thankful that I live in a peaceful country and we can play in our garden without the fear of bombs exploding on us.

It helps to create special moments for us to share as a family.

I’m sure that as our children grow older the ways we can incorporate gratitude into our family life will develop further. But for now, every night we sit at the dinner table together, light a candle and sing a blessing over our meal. (We find a song, rather than a verse works well to encourage Estelle’s involvement) It helps us to come together, at the end of a busy day, and just be here, grateful to the earth for our food and to be part of loving family.

I think that one of the most important things we can offer to another human is gratitude. I know I love it when people are thankful for the things I do, it makes me want to do more!

With two young children, most of my time is spent entertaining and cleaning. So when my husband gets home from work and says, “The house looks lovely honey”, those words are  shining stars at the end of a day’s work. I feel that my time is valued and appreciated. I look Estelle in the eyes and thank her for her for being so helpful to me when we are out shopping, or for obeying me when I have asked her to do something. We all love to feel that other people understand our worth.

In times when the things happening all around us can make us feel so insignificant, remember to take the time to be grateful for the blessings in your life.

Right now, the things that I am most thankful for are my family, the angels that always provide for us and my imagination. They make me rich.

So today, be blessed.

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These are some thoughts I had a minute ago about being a mother.

I look at the way other women mother their children. Sometimes I think, “wow, I wish I had her patience/ideas/knowledge/life experience/energy….” and compare myself and my mothering, sometimes even break myself down into pieces over it.

I struggle with fears about damaging my childs beautiful spirit when I lose my cool.

Some days I feel like a mess. I just can’t get it together and I aimlessly flit around the house doing a little bit here, a little bit there but never really achieve anything.

I question my reasons for discipline.  Am I being too harsh? Or am I being walked all over?  Am I doing the right thing in this situation? Is this behaviour acceptable or not? I want her to be her own person but she still needs to have boundaries, where is the line?

Some days it seems to me as though I have no idea what I’m doing. Too many books, too many theories, too much to take in. And how do I take ideas from a book and apply them to my life?

Then sometimes there are moments when there is some inexplicable magical understanding that passes between mother and child and we are in harmony, like two well oiled wheels spinning side by side, along the track. All the effort and patience invested day in, day out makes these times shine.

Always, I try to remind myself of this. Something I truly believe. Any decision I make for my children will be the right one, because I am their mother.

Any person in the world can have a theory on how I should be raising my children, but they don’t know us. They don’t know the connection we have. They haven’t been there with me in the dark hours of  a sleepless night holding a feverish baby. Listening to her whimpering, feeling her pain. Sharing her fears over a bad dream. Kissing her bump on the head. Waiting out a tantrum in the middle of a shopping centre. Smiling with delight as she clapped her hands for the first time, called me mum or put on her own shoes.

I think my ideas on parenting will be ever evolving.

For me, mothering is done moment to moment.  I know what my values are. I know the decisions we have made about how we will guide our children to make correct behavioural choices. These things are consistent. I also know that the language children understand is time.

When I think back on my childhood I remember my mum building cubby houses with us, reading books, telling stories, hanging out in the kitchen doing homework, watching her cook and laughing together. What I remember is the time she invested into our love banks. I know that the time I have with my children here at home with me is such a small chapter in my life long story.

So I try everyday to slow down. Be in the moment. No person can do everything. I know I don’t.

If we want to spend some time doing craft together, there is washing that isn’t being folded. If we want to go for a walk to the park, there is dinner that will probably be on the table a bit later than usual. But the way I see it, people are more important than housework. In the end, the kids do get fed and they have clothes to wear.

Every woman has her passions/talents/giftings. Obviously, I love to do craft. So this is what I share with my children and it gives me such pleasure to see them enjoy doing something that I love. I think it’s important to share your passions with your kids. They see and feel the intentions behind everything we do. Also by spending my time doing craft with my kids, it helps me to meet my needs while they stay occupied. So share what’s in your heart with your kids, it will be rewarding for you!

I know sometimes I find it hard to keep my flame alive (as a woman and a mother) when I’ve had no sleep because the kids have been sick or it’s just been a really long day. So I’m always on the look out for ‘soul inspiration’ to keep my fire for life burning. It may be a song or an article or a blog post that resonates in me, gets me thinking and gives me that little bit of what I need at that moment. Here are a few links that you other ladies out there may appreciate if you too are needing a little ‘soul inspiration’:

If you have something you would like to share, please do!

We are who we are. What I have to offer to my kids may not seem enough in my mind, but if our time together making collages out of magazine clippings and colouring in toilet rolls is what speaks love into their beings than I have suceeded.

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