Monday, March 28, 2011

Self Gratification.

It is funny what things have stuck in my mind from when I was younger.  Things people have said.  Things that have made me question my worth.   I remember my uncle saying with disgust  "You only want to do music?" when we were talking about what we wanted to do with our lives.  His daughter wanted to work with NASA and I only wanted to be a music teacher!  I haven't seen him since then (I was 18) - he would be disgusted that I never got to even be that music teacher (yet) and I am a stay-at-home-mum!  

It has only been recently that I have had a sense of pride about who I am, and where I am in my life.  I am proud to be a mother and a wife and only a mother and wife.   I do not think I am any less of a person for not becoming a doctor or a lawyer or a scientist working at NASA.  I do not think I am "dumb" either.  I am pretty smart actually.  Other people judge, and I used to believe them.

I never went to university.  I left school and went into the work force.  I have never had any formal training with anything.   I pick things up very easily.  You only have to show me how to do something once.  I usually don't need instructions.  

I am very logical.  I just do what makes sense.   I think this makes me even more proud when I achieve something.  With no help.  Makes me think I can do anything.

I can do anything!

When we started putting together Hayden's "big boy" room, he chose birch furniture and green as his main colour.  Strange child has had a favourite colour since he was 18months old!  Since when does an 18month old have a favourite colour?

So, we purchased the birch furniture, and started buying green accent things.  I found a green clock for $4 at target.  Then I found green fabric boxes for $5 and purchased the 7 that they had left.  They fit perfectly inside his square baskets tucked nicely in his birch bookcases, and keep the tiny pieces of lego from falling through the cracks in the baskets.

Then, it was time to purchase him a new bed.  I searched high and low for a birch bed.  Apart from an ugly, cheap looking thing from ikea, I came up empty.  So I thought I will buy an ensemble and MAKE him a headboard!

I did a quick look on youtube, and watched one girl show me how to make a headboard.  But this was a headboard that you attached to the wall.  It was also a 3 part headboard for a queen size bed.   I wanted one piece, with legs (as we have to have it up against a window!).

I went to the hardware store, with only what was in my head and purchased an MDF board, screws, wood, and then went to spotlight and chose a fabric, bought some wadding and went to the foam shop and had the man cut me some foam to size.

I searched for aaaages for some buttons, but I didn't like any of them.  I finally bought a self-covering button kit from ebay, and with some frustration, covered my own buttons (the fabric was thick, so it wasn't as easy as it was supposed to be!)

Then, in under 2 hours, I whipped this up.  No instructions, no 2nd look on youtube... just doing what I thought was right!

I made this... all by myself!!!!!

I am so very very proud to say that I made this.  I made this.  WOOHOO!!!  And more than that, it looks brilliant!!!!!  DOUBLE WOOHOO!!!

And the cherry on the top?  My darling little boy says "You did such a great job mum.  I love it.  Thank you!"

What do you think?  These babies are selling for $400 in stores.  I spent $70 and less than 2 hours!

I am very proud of myself!


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Angelic, Breathtaking, Captivating.

I had the most wonderful day on Thursday.  A girlfriend of mine had twin baby girls last week, and I met them on Thursday.  My first thought was at how calm and cruisy their gorgeous mama is.  She cared for these babies with such ease.  She even tandem fed them... magical!

Anyway, I took my camera and I can't stop looking at these little creatures.   Capturing them together proved a little difficult.  Miss S was a little more stubborn than her sister Miss L.  Miss L would stay wherever we put her - but Miss S, well, every time we thought we had her settled into a good position, she would spring open.  Eek!  So... in my short visit, I captured more of Miss L.  I plan to go back in a couple of weeks to do some more.  And hopefully add their big brother into the mix (whom, by the time we wanted him, was having meltdowns as he was ready for a nap!)

Now, remember, I am not a photographer - I just have so much fun taking photos.  So please be kind.  :)

Don't you just want to kiss those lips!  ::sigh::

Photography is one thing I really do enjoy doing.  I am not sure I will ever start a business, however, I just love the creative side - and one thing I have never been is creative.   I am really chuffed when I take a photo that I think is pretty darn good!

I can't wait to get these photos to my friend.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Petrol, Chickens and Rhythm.

I have been in a major funk this week.  I still can't put my finger on it, but I just wasn't me.  I wasn't sick {although I had some horrid days with a sick toddler},  I wasn't tired, I wasn't down.  But I just couldn't get myself up and out of the low I was sitting in.

The washing pilled up, the floors got grubby and the bathroom mirrors had sticky toothpaste handprints on them... and I just couldn't be bothered.

This morning when we woke, Brett said "I need to get out of the house... come on, lets got for a drive up the mountain, we haven't done it in ages".  I think I was pregnant the last time we trecked up the mountain... and this is probably the biggest reason.


For those of you not from around these parts... it has NEVER been this high.
110 is high, 130 is atrocious, 151.9 is literally speechless!
*When I got my licence over 15 years ago... I remember thinking 70c was high!  :o

So, after we spent over $100 filling the minivan up, we made our way up the mountain.  It was a peaceful drive as I had my music playing on my ipod and the kids were watching a movie.

The whole way up, Brett was being optimistic that we would arrive above the dreary clouds.  It wasn't too bad.  There were a few moments that we had to find shelter, but we used those moments to have a cuppa and something to bite.

Waiting for the short shower to pass when we arrived at the mountain markets!

The famous Bacon Rolls.
We spent a little time at the markets and bought some yummy coffee beans from the local grower, loads of apples and Brett met an awesome man who was an old world map printmaker.  His work was exquisite and Brett was really keen on learning more.

The kids had fun with these chicken cluckers... seriously, you would think there was a brood of hens in our house... they are so cool! {You pull a wet piece of cloth along the string held taught}

We then stopped at the edge of the mountain, where on a fine and windy day, the hang-gliders flock.  Again we timed getting out of the car to the second, and had just moments to snap a few photos before we loaded back into the car just in time!

Flying baby!  I just love that she didn't take her thumb out of her mouth!

We then headed back down the mountain, and I tallied that the drive cost us about $25 in petrol!  Eek!!!

When we got home, I stuck to my pact, and I cranked the music up.  Then I decided to get all the instruments out.  Brett and I agreed a long time ago, that we would have lots of instruments lying around the house.  We want the kids to have them available to pick up when they want, and just jam.

And they do.  We regularly have someone sitting on the couch, strumming at one of the 5 guitars, or sitting at the piano, banging away.

We set the drum kit up in the garage, and within minutes, all the kids in the street flocked.


Hayden & Lucy had fun...but Joshua...

This kid has rhythm!!!  Man, he is destined to be a drummer.  I was impressed!

and this one... well... he just showed off!  :)

And little Oliver couldn't be left out...

Watch out world... Five Little Reasons are bound for stardom!  :)

Have a great week, and remember to fill it with music!


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Hairbrushes, Wooden Spoons and Fists.

I was raised listening to Madonna, Queen, Meatloaf, Simon & Garfunkle, Jethro Tull, Deep Purple and  Supertramp.  

My parents were are rock and roll.  

In early high school, I discovered Bon Jovi, Roxette and later the Goo Goo Dolls.  I started playing the piano at 5, and studied music from an early age, right through to highschool.  I also grew up singing.  I loved to sing.  I was a good singer.  I was in all the choirs.  Church, School & Bathroom choirs.  I was pretty good.  I wasn't destined to be a singer, but I had tone and hit all the right notes.  

I have a real appreciation of music.  I will listen to pretty much anything.

I guess this is a big reason Brett and I are a perfect match.  He too grew up studying music.. but more in a cool boy, self-taught way.  He was in the band, played drums, guitar and bass.  All of which I wished I could play.  He was also in all the choirs and has such a deep passion for music that it borders insane.  He is a real genius when it comes to music.  You can ask him ANYTHING about music and he will know.  Serioulsy, he knows every artist, every name of every album, he knows about the "newbies" before they have even released their first song.

I can hear a song on the radio, text him one line from the song, and he will text back the Artist, Album and Song.  FREAKY!!!

Something I have lost over the past few years is my connection to music.  However, my journey of my "finding myself" has made me rediscovered my love for music.

My darling husband bought me an iPod touch for Mothers Day last year, mainly because I was complaining about all the diary's, calendars and post-it-notes with all our appointments... nothing matched.  I wanted something that I could "sync" with my iCal {my computer diary/calendar for all those not mac}.  I love it.  Now, no matter where I am, I can make sure I don't double book anything {and with all the kids I have, double booking is very easy to do!}.

However, in the past almost 12 months, apart from playing solitaire and having a few free kids apps to keep the kids busy in the doctors waiting room, I haven't really used my iPod for anything other than that.  So I decided to start using iTunes.

I have had my iMac for over 18 months and I have never used iTunes.

Go figure.

But I am a little shiny disk kind of a girl.

And besides... when do I ever get time to listen to music.  I haven't been able to "crank" it in the minivan for a few years.  Either the kids are too noisy, or they are watching a movie {note to self: must get another couple of wireless headphones so I can have my radio back}.  And during the day, I either forget to turn the music on, or I have babies sleeping, so don't want to crank it up. It is very hard to listen to music when you are trying to  hush a baby to sleep, or trying to auto-pilot your way to a destination in the car.   And forget about sitting down to play the piano.

See, for me, when it comes to music, I need to have it CRANKED!  Dance like no-one is watching cranked.  Pretending that I can dance, wildly waving my arms, swinging your hair, feeling free, feeling the beat.

So, I have been s l o w l y transferring all my CD's to my iTunes.  And have been reminiscing listening to all my favourites.  Kelly Clarkson, Madonna, GooGoo Dolls, Bon Jovi, Sara Bareillies - who is my current favourite.

I now carry my iPod everywhere.  I stick it in my bra, and away I go... hanging the washing out, doing the dishes, mopping the floors... Do they make waterproof headphones?  I would so buy a pair so I could listen in the shower.

And all the time I am dancing.

Shaking my boo-tee.

Swinging my hips.

Feeling the rhythm.

And I have made a pact with myself to crank the music on the surround speakers in the lounge room for at least 3 songs per day.

And dance and sing like no-one is watching.

Except, there is always at least one little person watching.

So, this week, I challenge you to pull out your hairbrush, your wooden spoon or your fist and sing as loudly as you can.  Dance as crazy as you can.  You will be surprised at how good it makes you feel.

I am off now to dance and sing with my darling husband.

In our kitchen.

While cooking dinner.

With the kids dancing around.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sunday High Tea

Today I got to spend some time with my girls.  We headed out for a High Tea lunch at the Sheraton, to celebrate one of my mums close friends birthday.

Lucy and I got dressed and talked about etiquette.  As we sat in the bathroom, straightening her hair, we talked about manners and expectations that come with being a girl.  She was allowed to wear her dangly earrings (little cherry's), her "L" pendant and her bluebird bracelet.

We packed a little handbag with her little hairbrush, her lipgloss, some tissues and some bandaids...for her new shoes... just in case.

We headed to my parents house, to pick up my mum & grandma.  While we were there, I asked dad to take  some photos of the 4 generations.  He took about 20 photos... this one is the only one not blurred.  Love you dad!  :)

4 Generations of girls!  

The Sheraton here is right on the beach.  Such a gorgeous setting.  Lucy was in awe of the beautiful hotel.  I had a little giggle when she said "Oh mama, check out the lovely taps" when we went to the bathroom.

The Gorgeous View from our table.

Of course, who could resist sitting on the bench in the elevator!

 Lunch was delicious!  I ate waaaay too much.  Lucy was so excited when I said she could have a cup of tea (weak decaf).  She sipped it so gently.

I love my shoes - but boy was I glad to take them off when we got to the car.
{Note To Self:  Must wear heels more often to get your feet used to them again!}

To end our beautiful day, we had to stop on the side of the highway on the way home to take a photo of this gorgeous rainbow.  Lucy wanted to look at it forever.  She said "it is even more magical mama, because it is a DOUBLE rainbow!".

Have a great week everyone.  We hope it is filled with bursts of colour!

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