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Food For Thought Friday

Poem-Image
To do one thing that is true
to yourself,
not listening to the voices
that would mock you
into staying ordinary
 
To do all the many things
that are inside
and need to get out,
not remaining beholden to
the suffocating tedium
of other people’s expectations
 
To be brimful with anticipation
for whatever new passion might be
waiting to unfurl;
 
To have stories to tell,
instead of nothing to say
 
How sad to live a life
that is not like that.

A poem written by my mum that featured in her funeral booklet.

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Hide and Seek Toddler Style

So, lately the boys have been wanting to play hide and seek a lot but our house is tiny. Like, 80 square metre tiny! And there are really only so many places this mum can hide. Still the game manages to play out like this every single time.

‘Mum! Muuuuum! Play hide and seek with us!’

Children run off to hide. I count to 10 and wander around the house saying all the places I am looking that I know they aren’t and avoiding the one place they always are. I mean always. It’s like Groundhog Day over and over and over again. Finley (the little one) is always in the linen closet and jumps out within 10 seconds of my saying ‘Ready or not here I come!’. Boom, out pops the 2 year old gleefully announcing ‘Here I am!’ followed by giggling from under the duvet on my bed (doona for you foreign folk).

Next up is my turn to hide. The three year old counts to 10 like he is in a speed counting race and I have about 3 seconds to hide behind a door. About 15 seconds post ready or not the 3 year old is crying.

Mummy is GONE! She’s gone invisible!

Followed closely by wailing and tears. Yes, real tears. Wet tears. Seriously, 15 seconds. I then have to giggle or bang the wall or something to show him I am not invisible and I am just hiding.

Then we repeat.

Linen closet, duvet, tears, repeat. Linen closet, duvet, tears, repeat.

Please tell me I am not the only one!

What games do you play in your house and how do they play out?

I think we need a new game.

Speaking of Fruit Flies …

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So Mr Google told me that of all the animal kingdom, a fruit fly has the shortest attention span of all, followed closely by the goldfish. I would be inclined to add myself to that list.

I am terrible for getting a sudden obsession with something, starting it and not finishing it before moving on to the next thing. The best example of this is gardening. My husband didn’t want a bar of it so with two little boys underfoot I set about digging my own garden over summer. It is hard work! I became obsessed with Pinteresting garden design and visiting garden centres. The pros to being under 50 and in a hardware/garden centre is that you inevitably get lots of help from the men who frequent these stores. Whether it be the staff, the tradies or the random do-it-yourselfer, I somehow managed to get all the things I needed transported to my car with very little effort at all – trees, pavers, bricks, compost, you name it. It got to the point that I was driving out of town to garden centres because I was too embarrassed by how many times I had been to the local stores and I couldn’t face going back. Again. So I got my garden all dug out and planted over about 5 weeks of summer and then I had a brilliant idea.

A dry creek bed.

Yep. I saw one on Pinterest. How hard could it be? So abandoning my garden (which was now starting to sprout a few weeds) I set to work to create one of these:

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Or these:

Or something like this:

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You can see where this is going. Digging a dry creek bed is harder than digging a garden because you have to dig deeper, you have to collect rocks, you have to lay out weed mat and place the rocks in the perfect position to mimic a meandering stream bed. I fear my dry creek bed may turn into a ‘Nailed it’ version of the above examples.

Here is mine:

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Please keep in mind it is a work in progress. Was. Because now it is cold and I have rediscovered blogging. I suddenly have a million posts in my head. My writing block has lifted. And this is the problem. Half finished dry creek bed next to my weed garden that is now being taken over by a pumpkin I never knew I planted.

Yep, I am clearly a fruit fly. 

The 5 Chores Impossible To Do Efficiently with Small Children

On the weekends I always have to catch up on all the housework including the endless piles of washing that need to be washed, dried and then the worst part – folded. I hate folding washing with a passion, for me it is one of the most tedious aspects of housekeeping and I always end up with massive piles that get dumped on the bed and grow into an insurmountable pile that some refer to as Mount Washmore. But what is worse than humongous piles of washing that you need to fold? Trying to fold it with little helpers.

You all know what I am talking about. The mini ‘helpers’ that continually unfold the washing that has been folded, that think it is there to be tossed up in the air like confetti, that grab it and put it on their head and run around squealing and that ‘help’ to put it away while dropping it all down the hallway floor like a trail of crumbs.

Like this:

Cleaning-Low

Don’t you just love your mini helpers that make what used to once be easy efficient household chores into the battle of the century?

Here are the other 4 household chores on my list that are impossible to do efficiently with young children …

1. Unload/load the dishwasher

Trying to stop them standing on the lid and tipping the whole thing over is the first challenge, then it’s a race to get all the sharp knives out before they stab: A. Themselves; or B. Their brother/sister/dog/you. Then come the small hands passing you the breakables quicker than you can put them away while simultaneously trying to ‘load’ the dishwasher with dirty dishes before it is properly unloaded and slamming the door shut while the drawers are still out sending the whole lot crashing into the back. I deem this chore perfect for husbands who get home before you or once said child/children are in bed.

2. Vacuuming

Ah, vacuuming. The preparation of clearing all the floors in order to vacuum that the mini me’s deem the perfect opportunity to dump their whole box of Lego/blocks on the floor and spread them around for good measure. Or open the vacuum cleaner and tip the contents of the vacuum bag all the way down the hallway. Or yell ‘my turn!’ over and over while trying to take the handle off you. Or if you are reeeeeally lucky they are scared of the sound of the vacuum and cry great huge sobs the whole time screaming ‘TURN IT OFF! NOOOOO!’. I only know this because I have the child who does that at Nana’s but at home he loves the vacuum cleaner. Strange child. Unfortunately this is one chore usually unsuitable for post bedtime and so you just have to suck it up and endure it. And then they usually tip a whole bag of chips out on the floor straight afterwards anyway, so really, why bother?

4. Make the bed

Usually they see this as the perfect opportunity to either jump on the bed or hide under all the blankets and play peek-a-boo.

5. Bake

How many times have you had to try and clean up spilt sugar or flour, fished broken egg shells out of the mix or better yet, had to clean up broken eggs off the floor that they took great pride in smashing while you had your back turned? Or they stand at the oven screaming they want a cookie and don’t understand that they need to actually cook and then they need to cool down before they are able to be eaten? Then you spend the next 40 minutes with an inconsolable child trying to explain this to them while they think you are the meanest mummy in the whole wide world trying to hold out on them and not let them have a cookie (that probably has broken egg shells and an extra helping of sugar/flour/baking powder in it anyway).

Yep, thought so.

What would you add to this list? And what is your least favourite chore?

Joining the #IBOT party over at EssentiallyJess today. A big welcome to anyone visiting for the first time!

Sunday Sum Up

Pallser Bay3

I know, I know. 10.30pm on a Sunday night to post a blog entry? This girl be crazy! I am never up this late but a little man has been having agonising growth pains in his little legs (my three year old Cohen) and so I am writing while he is cuddling in beside me waiting for the pamol to kick in and ease his pain. It makes you realise just how much they still need you even though they love to start exerting their independence at this age. But we all know there is nothing quite like your mum to turn to in times of pain or emotional distress for that comforting cuddle.

I’ve been having some rough patches lately where I certainly could have done with my mums guidance and comfort and that unwavering support and honesty one can only really get from their mother. It’s at times like this that you realise that the grief and the enormity of your loss never goes away completely and the loneliness that comes with it can be overwhelming. With Mother’s Day approaching in New Zealand I encourage you all to realise just how truly lucky you are if you still have your mother here, treasure her for life is never the same once they are gone.

But back to the Sunday Sum Up …

We went to Cape Palliser over in the Wairarapa to see the seals, enjoy the rugged coastline and have a family picnic. It was lovely weather and the boys had a wonderful adventure, though I’m sure they thought we were mean not letting them get too close to the seals to pet them. I have posted a few photos of the day above. Other than that the week was pretty ordinary aside from what I touched on above which is always worse when sleep is on the lacking side and my brain seems to stop working to its full capacity. This week will be all about getting back on top of things like exercise and loading up on nutritious foods.

If I write it here I gotta do it right?!

What are you looking forward to this week?

Finding Your Bliss

MAKE YOUR BED AND LIE IN IT

Part 5

You may always have known what “floats your boat” or you may have spent much of your life in vague or outright discontent because your existence so far has been some other director’s movie when you should have been directing it yourself. Whatever the case, you need to grab the director’s chair ready to re-invent yourself and your life, and start making the movie your way, from the heart. If you need some help to dig out your authentic desires so you can turn them into a stunning script, there are many wonderful books available to show you how to do this, including one called ‘Simple Abundance’ by Sarah Ban Breathnach, from which the following excerpt has been taken:

The key to loving how you live is in knowing what it is you truly love. ‘To know what you prefer instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you that you ought to prefer, is to keep your soul alive,” 

Robert Louis Stevenson reminds us. Keeping our soul alive and nurturing our creativity is paramount in our quest for fulfilment , and it is only after we acknowledge our inner needs that we can harness the energy necessary to manifest them in our lives.

“It is inevitable that when one has a great need of something, one finds it,” Gertrude Stein reminds us. ‘What you need you attract like a lover.”

                                                                      Refined from  ‘Simple Abundance’

To discover your ‘bliss’ you must first discover what pleases you, that place where your heart leaps for joy.  Follow your instincts – they are the signposts to an exciting and fulfilling life. Choose paths that feel appropriate to you and follow them wherever they lead. There is a journey and adventure ahead, no matter what your age or circumstance. You are being called, and opportunities will always make themselves available to you when you follow this call.

Each of us is called to be courageous and trust the voice within. When you do so, every cell in your body is alive. There is an amplification of life and consciousness. You may not know what your next step is, but the adventure has begun.

Your experiences in life are unique. No-one has lived a life like yours before. Nor will anyone have your particular opportunities and talents. It is the uniqueness of your life’s journey that gives you the potential to contribute so much.

                                                                                             From ‘Happiness

Whatever the components of your “big, fat dreams” the same principles apply when it comes to living them.

Bliss-Low

Tell your  children…

No-one knows how long their time on earth is going to be, so when we are of an age to understand that this is our one chance to get it right, we should find the things that sing to our soul and make them our driving force.

Having a fulfilled soul will bring us joy when all is going well, and solace when life is difficult.

The songs will change with different phases and decades, but you must always follow your bliss.