3….How can that be???

This week my youngest baby turned 3…THREE…how can that be???

20140219-194857.jpg

I will forever remember the drama that surrounded Mia’s birth. Being diagnosed with a dilated aorta and tricuspid aortic valve at 37 weeks pregnant was enough to take my pregnancy to a whole new level, as we entered into a scary world of the unknown. Would I survive? Was it safe to deliver? Cesarean? ICU? Risk after? Open heart surgery?…it’s safe to say I was completely frightened out of my wits!!!! But when she finally came out, 2 weeks early, it was such a relief to hold my precious baby girl and know that I’d made it through the hardest part and so did she!

20140219-195457.jpg

Now 3 years on, my baby has gone so far past a baby it makes me really sad that I’ll never have ‘baby’ moments again!

20140219-200252.jpg

Mia – aka cookie, pumpkin, poocoo, darling, chick…pretty much anything other than Mia lol, is growing into a funny, intelligent little lady. When I looked back at photos from her second birthday, it really hit home how much she’s grown. In a year her language development has been amazing and she has been completely toilet trained since before Christmas. She LOVES reading books and her favourite shows are Playschool and the Wiggles. She knows her colours, most of her shapes, counts to 20 and spells her own name.

20140220-131102.jpg

Mia loves to help and she is a really good helper (most of the time lol). She is such a busy little bee now. Her week consists of hanging out with nanny while I work, play group, swimming lessons and helping me out with the house work and groceries. I really love hanging out with my mini me…she is so funny and makes me laugh a lot!! Mia was my most challenging baby and such a busy toddler, it’s so nice she’s reached an age where she’s great to take anywhere and unless she’s super tired, she really is a good girl!

20140220-131756.jpg

To celebrate Mia’s birthday this year which was on a Monday and my work day, we decided to have a family day on Sunday down at Wynnum. The weather was absolutely amazing and everyone had an awesome time, particularly the birthday girl. We spent the day swimming and had fish and chips for lunch.

20140220-132218.jpg

20140220-132231.jpg

20140220-132245.jpg

20140220-132254.jpg

20140220-132308.jpg

20140220-132319.jpg

20140220-132332.jpg

20140220-132350.jpg

20140220-132403.jpg

20140220-132425.jpg

20140220-132443.jpg

20140220-132456.jpg

20140220-132514.jpg

20140220-132529.jpg

20140220-132550.jpg

17th of February at 7.30pm Mia was exactly 3 years old! To celebrate the day, she spent it with nanny while I worked. They went to Maccas for morning tea and then did their usual – read books, sing songs, cuddle teddies and watch Playschool. I came straight home from work to cook dinner and ice her cake. This year’s theme was teddy bears. Mia loves teddies. She has so many of them and carries one around all the time. She was super excited it was her birthday, she didn’t even have her day nap so was pretty exhausted by the end of the day, but never stopped smiling:)

20140220-133204.jpg

20140220-133223.jpg

20140220-133244.jpg

20140220-133300.jpg

20140220-133328.jpg

20140220-133339.jpg

20140220-133347.jpg

20140220-133354.jpg

20140220-133403.jpg

20140220-133412.jpg

20140220-133425.jpg

20140220-133441.jpg

20140220-133449.jpg

20140220-133459.jpg

20140220-133511.jpg

20140220-133519.jpg

20140220-133527.jpg

20140220-133541.jpg

20140220-133552.jpg

20140220-133558.jpg

20140220-133604.jpg

20140220-133616.jpg

Mia turning 3 really hits home that my baby days are over. When I walk past the nappies in the supermarket, it reminds me I’ll never have a little babies bottom to kiss again. When I looked at the Best and Less catalogue this week and saw all the gorgeous new bonds all-in-ones , I think I actually had a tear in my eye. The only bit of baby I still hold onto is the fact that Mia is still in a cot…and she loves it so much I can’t see her vacating it anytime soon lol. But that day will come…later in the year the girls are going in together and that will be the day I’ll never have a nursery again…booohoooo;(

But for now I’m not going to dwell on that fact that my baby days are over, cause my mothering days will never be over. As the kids get older and they become more involved in sport and extra curricular activities, let alone everything that comes with going to school, they’ll need me more than ever!! This is Mia’s last year before she starts preschool next year and then she’ll be off to prep! I love my work days off with her, she is my little shadow and I will enjoy every moment I have with her before she starts school!

20140220-184555.jpg
Me and my mini me…my very own baby angel … Happy 3rd birthday princess xoxoxo!

Advertisements

Another Year Older!

20140206-135728.jpg

Another school year has started. The routine of being out of the house by 8am has stumbled upon us once again. School lunches are always needing to be sorted, as well as making sure uniforms are washed and ready and bags are packed! And of course the afternoons are now spent doing homework!!!

20140202-162309.jpg

It’s been quite a smooth transition back to school and work this year. Bay started grade 3, loves his teacher and has a few of his old-time friends in his class. He is mister cool this year and kisses me goodbye at the car and I don’t see him again until the bell goes at 2.30 when he walks down to Sienna’s classroom. Then there is my little (but big) grade one girl, who if you’re a regular follower of my blog would remember how she had separation anxiety at the beginning of prep. She had been super excited all holidays to be going into grade one, especially as she has Bailey’s year 1 teacher. The tears started the night before school started back…it’s never because she doesn’t want to go, it’s always because she’s going to miss us!

After lots of positive encouraging and keeping the morning quiet and calm, I’m so proud to say my baby girl started grade 1 with NO tears…they came the next day and the next…but no where near as bad as last year! They are very minimal and stop very quickly. I’m so grateful that Sienna has the most beautiful natured teacher who is very understanding and has taken her under her wing and nurtures her like her own. I really can’t wait for the day though when she happily skips off without needing 5 minutes of reassurance;(

20140202-163147.jpg

20140202-163159.jpg

Sienna has come such a long way from the little girl who started school 12 months ago though. Already her teacher has noticed the confidence in her, that even her brother didn’t have in year 1. It’s just that pit in the bottom of her belly (you know that home sick feeling) she gets and when she doesn’t have that, she oozes confidence and spark!

Each morning always brings a new start to the day and I wait with positive encouragement and distraction when I can see my baby girl let her emotions take over….separation anxiety sucks – for everyone involved! But my tough love approach is the only way to kick it to the kurb….this parenting gig was never meant to be easy! We are almost at the end of week two and there are still a few tears, but they are decreasing and I know she is so happy as she is making so many new friends…and OMG girls at that…and always comes out of class each afternoon with a smile from ear to ear:)

20140204-202550.jpg

It’s comforting knowing that Sienna has her big brother and cousin there. The other day Bailey was walking past Sienna’s classroom when she had a few tears…quick thinking from her teacher promoted her to call Bay in to comfort her and that helped heaps! She sure pulls at the heart-strings this girl. I asked her yesterday who she played with at lunch. Her response…”no one today, just myself!” I asked Why? Her response…”I just couldn’t stop thinking about you mum!” “I was picturing you where you stand and wait for me!” God bless her…it’s so nice to be loved!

My response to her innocence was “I love that you love me and want to see me, but I don’t want you to let your thinking of me spoil your fun at school!” “You know I will always be back to pick you up when the bell goes…school time is your time to learn and have fun!” I know exactly how she is feeling as I did the exact same thing to my mum…karma really is a b;$@ch Lol! I know she’ll get there…time is the essence to this issue!

20140206-135154.jpg

It’s hard to believe that my babies will be turning another year older – 8, 6 and 3…where has that time gone?? As I watch them grow and develop, it makes me proud to be their mum. I’ve certainly been dealt some rough times with my trio, especially when it has come to their health, but apart from the usual ups and downs of children, we are in a good place at the moment!

20140206-135937.jpg

Now that things are in full swing and we are back to routine, life ain’t that bad. Yeah things are busy again (especially on my two work days) but they are going to get a whole lot busier next week when all the after school sport starts again. But like usual you manage and when the chips are down and the exhaustion sets in, I will be making sure I still stop and smell the roses….and look at all the wonderful memories we created on our summer holiday lol!

20140206-135654.jpg

Anything For a Slurpee!

Yesterday at 2.45pm, we were leisurely strolling to the car after school. The kids were happily laughing and chatting to their friends. We said goodbye to the Baker family who were parked the closest to the gate. As I was chatting to one of my friends, we watched the kids take off down the path. As I yelled out “be careful, stop running on the path” (as one of the kids had just fallen over), Bailey went down like a bag of potatoes!!

I didn’t freak out, I didn’t move my feet any faster than what they were moving, all I could think and it actually came out of my mouth when I got to him was, “how many times do you have to be told not to run on the path!!!” The first thing I noticed was a few grazes and the worst thing I noticed was the lump that instantly came up on Bay’s arm, as well as the fact that his arm was looking a little crooked! He was so upset, the worst I’ve ever seen him after a stack! I couldn’t believe it. I knew it was broken. I was praying that it wasn’t, but my instinct knew otherwise!

20131128-140318.jpg
It’s hard to see in a photo, but
this is Bay’s arm before having it straightened and casted!

The rest of the afternoon was a whirlwind of events from going to the GP, to QLD x-Ray, back to the GP to finally be told at 5.30pm that we had to go to the hospital!!!! A simple break would have been plastered there and then at my GP’s surgery, but because his radius was sitting at about a 15 degree angle, it needed to be put back into place…ouch – my poor baby boy;(!!!!

20131128-141016.jpg

20131128-141035.jpg

Now if you have known my son since birth, he has always been highly strung when it comes to pain and has always been filled with lots of fear when it comes to the unknown! When he originally fell down, he was extremely upset and ‘dramatic’ for a good 15mins, but once the initial shock of falling over past and he settled right down and stopped crying, I never heard another whimper or complaint from him. He was the complete opposite. Extremely calm and took everything in his stride…I am so proud of how he handled it all! All he was worried about was “mum if my arm is broken, will you help me put my pajamas on?!?”…bless his little cotton socks!

20131128-160227.jpg

20131128-160236.jpg

Now for what we think was the hilarious part of the day. I know it’s not very ‘parent’ like to laugh at your child, but it was better than crying! For Bailey to have his arm put back in place, they first tried without any intervention, even then bay didn’t flinch, but the look of horror on his face showed how much pain he was in. That’s when the happy gas came out and for the next 5 minutes, Kane and I would be amused by the funniest 7 year old going! I shouldn’t admit this, but I had to film it! Isn’t life about creating memories….this sure will be a good memory to whip out at his 21st lol!

20131128-162211.jpg

20131128-162216.jpg
“I love that happy gas, give me some more!” He kept saying!

Thankfully the nurse practitioner was able to put Bay’s arm back in place with the help of the happy gas and general anaesthetic wasn’t required. After it was done, he told his father it really hurt when she pushed on his arm, but he didn’t want to cry…bless him! A final x-ray showed that his arm was set back in place and we were finally right to go home by 10pm!!! They only backslabbed his arm for now due to swelling, so we are off to the Fracture Clinic next Tuesday to get his proper cast on!

20131128-162706.jpg

What a year! We started the year with Sebby breaking his leg and so much has happened in between and now the year ends with Bay breaking his arm:/ And the worst time of year! We have so many Christmas functions coming up that involve swimming;( and we go on our beach holiday in a months time!!! Fingers crossed the doctors are hoping for a 4 week recovery, which will be just in time for Christmas! At first I was so annoyed, but am just blessed that it’s not that bad and a broken bone is fixable…so many other poor children are suffering way worse off than Bay!

Today was a brand new day, new beginnings or should I say the beginning of Bay’s broken arm! I took him up to school to show his friends and teacher as he will have the rest of the week off school! On our way home, he said since I have a broken arm can I get a slurpee, sorry I’ll rephrase that and say one of the first things he said yesterday was, if I’ve got a broken arm can I get a slurpee?…in my muffled state of mind I obviously said yes!!! Slurpees are a holiday treat at our house, but guess who got a slurpee today? He deserved it after being so brave yesterday, BUT my son sure will do anything for a slurpee lol!

20131128-163731.jpg

Road Trip….

If you’ve been following my blog, you would know that our family has dealt with a lot of emotional hardship this year. We’ve gone from losing one of the oldest and dearest members of the family to one of our youngest…all within a fortnight of each other. And if we’ve learnt anything this year, family is truly forever!!

This weekend we went on a road trip to Kingaroy. My cousin and her husband live in Kingaroy. They bought a fudge, wine and cheese business over three years ago and have been there since. We’ve been to Kingaroy a few times now and always have the best time. The aim of this weekend was to have everyone take a road trip and spend time together before the rush of the festive season. There were over 20 of us celebrating an early Christmas in the park yesterday and we had a ball!!!

20131124-161754.jpg
Mia’s longest road trip…she really was awesome and we’ve planned to do it more often now:)

This was our longest road trip we’ve been on as a party of 5! Mia has been our worst car traveller. We barely make it to the coast without her cracking it! We were so proud of her. I made sure I had everything charged from iPads, iPods, DVD players and plenty of food and books and I can honestly say we barely needed anything!

We spent our first night having dinner at one of the local pubs…there are so many hotels/pubs in Kingaroy!!! It was so lovely catching up with Megan and Shannon. They have had such a tough year this year and seeing them being able to smile and have fun, makes me so proud to call them family. They are an absolute inspiration to anyone who knows them.

20131124-162339.jpg
Ladies of the family…

The kids had a ball at our motel we stayed at. It even had a pool. I recommend anyone who stays at Kingaroy to check it out…Kingaroy Country Motel!

20131124-162457.jpg
They lived in the pool any chance they got!

The weather was very unstable but we were lucky enough to enjoy the day we had planned in the park! Megan and Shannon put on an awesome BBQ and we sat around reminiscing and laughing…love family for that reason!!!

20131124-162701.jpg

20131124-162709.jpg

20131124-162718.jpg

20131124-162727.jpg

20131124-162742.jpg

20131124-162751.jpg
This is some of mum’s side of the family who were able to make it!

Once we dispersed for the day, we cruised around to get dinner…I can officially say I know my way around Kingaroy very well after going to several different places to satisfy everyone’s desires lol. I also learnt that if you resided in Kingaroy, you wouldn’t need to go anywhere as they have everything you need! Big W, Target country, Woolies, Aldi to name a few…they even have a Loot Homewares store – I was super impressed!

20131124-163403.jpg

Today was our last day and ended as great as the whole weekend! We went to Megan and Shannon’s for brekky…thank you Shannon for an awesome feed. They’ve done a fabulous job with the renovations to their house, it was great to finally see where they live:) After breakfast we went to their shop and stocked up on their fudge…I’m currently in a fudge coma as I type this lol! Check out ‘Taste South Burnette’ if you’re ever in Kingaroy!

20131124-163650.jpg

20131124-163659.jpg

20131124-163713.jpg

We had an absolute ball. The kids even said “it’s sad we have to leave Kingaroy!” Lol. We are already looking forward to our next trip. Thank you to Megan and Shannon for an awesome weekend!

Our trip home….
Wasn’t as good as going, but hasn’t put us off another road trip! And we are so grateful we purchased the car we did…so comfy and so much space!!!!
The kids will be in bed at 6.30….and so will mummy and daddy lol!

20131124-164144.jpg

20131124-164204.jpg

20131124-164224.jpg

20131124-164255.jpg

20131124-164304.jpg
We love driving past Wivenhoe Dam and it was also great to see our country side was beautiful and green!

Now to nibble away on all our fudge….

20131124-164435.jpg

My Little Evolving Lady:)

My how things can change quickly!!! In the world of a toddler, their development can immerse over night, let alone a week! This time last week, I had convinced myself that Mia (2 and 8 months) wasn’t going to be toilet trained anytime soon and like I would have been in the past, I wasn’t really fazed. Over the years of being a mother, I’ve relaxed into my role. With my first I was so routine and structured and wasn’t flexible at all. Then my second came along and the reins were loosened a bit and by the time our third came along, well lets just say that left me with very little time to worry or stress over much. Everyday I hit the ground running and my goal was always to make sure the kids were fed and bathed, the rest always fitted in around that. The only common denominator to all three children was consistency with rules and boundaries!

Over the past 7 and a half years, I’ve changed thousands of nappies, wiped poo and wee off three tiny little bottoms and am happy to say (but with a tear in my eye) my days of nappies are almost over. Last Thursday a miracle happened (well it was to me because it felt like it was never going to happen lol) Mia finally did a wee on the toilet!!! Hearing those 5 little words “mummy I did a wee!” out of my sweet little girl’s mouth was like music to my ears! I’ve been working (inconsistently) on toilet training for a few months now. On a nice warm sunny arvo I would let Mia run around in undies and we would go through the steps: Where do we wee or poo? Tell mummy if you need to go to the toilet! I’d ask her every 10 minutes if she needed to go and I’d sit her on the toilet every half an hour.

Mia could talk the talk, but she couldn’t walk the walk. Half her problem was that she wouldn’t sit still and concentrate on going. She is a real fidgety child and no matter how much I would remove everything around her so she had nothing to touch, she still would find an excuse to fidget. I never got mad or frustrated at her, as it was my fault that I wasn’t being consistent with the whole process. I’m the biggest advocate for consistency with anything to work successfully and that I wasn’t doing. When Bailey and Sienna toilet trained, I didn’t have anyone in school. We could stay home all day and focus on the task at hand. Now I have two kids in school, my days are busier than ever and am rarely home.

I had resigned myself to the fact that I wasn’t able to be consistent until the Christmas school holidays, but I knew Mia was close to finally letting go of her nappy. Instead I was being patient and encouraging her every chance that I got. Over the past month, Mia has gone from accidents all the time, to holding on for a couple of hours and then doing an accident, to doing a tiny wee in her undies and stopping herself from going, to actually telling me she needed to go…but still not actually going – this was happening even when offering a treat as the prize!! Then that moment of glory and what I would say was the key to my success….diced bacon!!! “Diced bacon” you say lol!

Last Thursday afternoon was very different like all the other days I’d tried. Mia seemed focused and determined to hit the jackpot and earn her treat! Instead of sitting on the toilet for 5 minutes trying to go she was determined to stay there until she did a wee. I kept saying “let’s try again later” Mia kept saying “no I’ll do it now!” I went about my business, cooking dinner, homework and the like and when I checked on her while chewing food, I had her attention. She asked could she have what I was eating – diced bacon. I placed a few bits in her mouth, just enough to allow her to relax and alas…she did a wee!!!!!

We were all SO exited!!!! We did a happy dance and she thought that was hilarious. She was super proud, as was I and she happily enjoyed her treat! She told the world! Well the world to her is all her family. Every time someone called or came over…”I did a wee on the toilet!!!” and we’d all cheer again! She didn’t go again that night but the next day I was determined to take this lead and run with it!

20131113-134122.jpg
Mia enjoying her treat after her first wee on the toilet!

I was really hoping that the day before’s success wasn’t a once off and I had a really good gut instinct that once Mia did that first one, she’d take to going to the toilet like duck to water. Thankfully I can say she did. Day two was deemed a huge success. No accidents, telling me when she needed to go, a dry day sleep nappy, a successful shop visit even with a pit stop, and OMG her first poo on the toilet! I went to bed on such a high and was super proud of the little lady who had told me for weeks that “I’m too little to sit on the toilet!” lol!
/>
20131113-134649.jpg
Super proud of my super star toilet trainer!

Almost a week on and Mia is completely toilet trained with her wees. She doesn’t wear a nappy to bed in the day now and even though it only took to day three to wake with a dry night nappy, I still put one on her just in case. BUT where she had done a couple of poos on the toilet, all of a sudden she has decided that she doesn’t like doing a poo on the toilet anymore! Again I’m not to fazed. I went through hell with my son and number 2s and if there is anything I learnt it’s not to force them. This is my next hurdle with ‘a life with Mia’ lol, but like everything else, I will be there for her and we will get through it!

It’s all getting a bit real now. My days of having a baby are almost at the end of its trail. I’m in two minds about it all. Apart of me is happy and I’m really embracing the little lady that is evolving before my eyes, but then I let myself think back to all the wonderful times I’ve had when my children we little babies and I’m sadden that I’ll never get to birth or breast feed again. I’ll never wrap another baby up or smell them like they are food (how delicious do babies smell lol). But one thing is always for sure, no matter how old my babies are, they’ll never be too old to kiss or cuddle. I may not be needed like a was when they were tiny babies, but while I’m on this earth, I’ll always be needed by them, just like I always need my mumma:)!

20131113-140915.jpg
I’m sad to leave the baby phase behind, but I know there are so many exciting times ahead of us!

For now I will enjoy the baby that is left in Mia. She is cutting her last tooth…finally and in the new year she will go into a bed. I think once our home doesn’t hold a cot in it anymore, that will really be the day that my baby days will be over;(

Tug of War…

I’ve…hit…a…brick wall…my brain is in a state of ‘tug of war’!!! We are ALL tired…the kids are a weeping mess. It feels like we’re running a marathon on empty. We can see the finish line, yet it’s still so far away. This year has been a massive one to say the least and with a husband who has had two weeks holidays in two years…let’s just say – we need a holiday!!!!

I don’t know about you, but at this time of year I always fall into a trap where I’m torn between wanting the year to hurry up and end so we can be on holidays and enjoy the fun of the festive and holiday season. But then I don’t want it to go to fast as I want to enjoy it and if it goes fast that means my babies will be turning another year older….sigh!!

I find once the calendar turns over to November and between the end of year jobs as a teacher, the end of year things to organise as a parent and everything that Christmas brings, before we know it we’ll be shouting out “happy new year!!!!” But for me this year is different. This year has seen so many highs and some of the lowest of lows emotionally. It’s the year my first born baby girl started prep…and it’s the year we’ve lost one of the most precious people in our lives…nana;( Yes a new year will bring a new start for everyone, but it means letting go as well…tug of war!

I’ve absolutely enjoyed the school year as a mum…having a child in prep is awesome! This year has been even more special as Sienna has had far more hurdles to overcome than Bailey ever did when he started prep. I’ve had the privilege of watching my insecure and shy girl grow and evolve into an outgoing and happy 5 year old, who is nothing like the girl who walked through those prep doors at the beginning of the year. I’m so grateful that by only working two days a week, I’ve had three days where I’ve been able to share in puzzles and games with my little preppie and now being able to help with literacy groups once a week has been a real treat for both sienna and I!

20131106-131156.jpg
Sienna has come so far thanks to her amazing prep teacher!

At the end of this week, there will only be 5 weeks left to enjoy being a prep mum. The light at the end of this tunnel is that I get to do it all over again in 2 years time. I’m also at peace with knowing that my little girl is ready to tackle the challenges of grade one. Ask me that 6 months ago and I wouldn’t have been able to give a confident answer, but I’m super confident now…I just want to hold on to the next 5 weeks for as long as I can though;( because once your child finishes prep, they’ll be in grade 3 before you know it…which is my son!!!

20131106-131852.jpg
How did I come to have an almost grade 1 and grade 3 child…they were only born yesterday weren’t they?;(?;(

The precious time I’ve had with Mia this year has been so special, as it’s the first time in 5 years I’ve been able to spend quality time with only one of my children, rather than bits here and there. A new year for Mia means making the decision to start her in kindy…tug of war or maybe that one is having to clip the apron strings;(

20131106-155529.jpg
Feels like Mimi has gone from a baby to a little lady over night!

I often get into a slump where time (and the lack of it) defeats my thinking. I start to feel sad and down about how fast my children are growing up and how the weeks keep rolling into months and I somehow get myself into a state of panic where I feel suffocated…weird I know, but that’s the control freak coming out in me!!! The past week I’ve felt so suffocated by everything and on the weekend I felt defeated. But then realty knocked on the door and made me realise that I’m in control of whether I’m defeated and that I will NEVER be!

It’s at times like this that I have to put my big girl pants on, take a big deep breath and just take each day as it comes. Knowing that every weekend is busy for the rest of the year is not going to defeat me, rather it will excite me at the possibilities of fun that is ahead of us. The fact that almost everyday for the rest of the year has something on is not going to bog me down, rather I’m going to feel grateful that my life is full of wonderful people and events to create new memories at! The fact that my children are going to get more tired and more irritable as the school year gets closer to finishing is not going to make me lose dignity as a mother, rather I will try and stay as calm as I can…and that goes for keeping as calm as I can with my husband to lol!

I have faith that together we will cross the finish line at the end of the year….there may be a few bumps along the way, but we will stay united until the end! Most importantly if there is ever a time in the year to appreciate the amazing things in life, it’s now. As we venture into a time of craziness, I will remember to stop and enjoy the small things in life. I will try and be the best wife and mother I can be. I will be organised and efficient and do the most important things that need to be done in a day. When I’m feeling stressed and overwhelmed I will stop, sit, take some deep breaths and remember the most important things in life are…to love, to laugh and to live like there’s no tomorrow!

20131106-160009.jpg
Sometimes they drive me up the wall, but mostly they always make me laugh!

“I think I’ve made it!!!”

As the school holidays come to an end, I’ve been reflecting back on the past two weeks that have been absolutely wonderful! No stress, no rushing, no deadlines to be met…to me that is what I call bliss! The kids and I have spent many a morning snuggling in bed and days where we’ve pottered around the house in our pjs. We have done so many wonderful things from – beach play dates, to bowling, to playground visits and have swam, swam, swam! The weather at this time of year is always lovely, but this year it has been exceptional!!!!

For the first time since becoming a parent almost 8 years ago I think I can finally say “I’ve made it!!!”…through the “baby” years anyway!! It’s the first school holidays where my littlest baby Mia (who is 2 and a half) doesn’t seem so much of a baby anymore and has happily joined in with everything the two older ones have done. She is getting to such a great age now where her day naps aren’t as big of an issue anymore and she is so happy just to cruise along with what we are doing without any fuss. In the past, we would plan our days around “the baby” and choose activities that were “baby” friendly and having 3 babies in 5 years, those years of “baby” planning have gone on for a long time!! I even managed getting my toes done with Mia in toe and she was an angel!

I have spent so many hours just sitting and watching my babies play together (nicely most of the time). I seriously could do this forever. I get so much enjoyment watching their faces when they are happy and having fun. The excited looks on their faces when they’ve discovered something or created something. I’ve kicked footballs with them, taught Sienna all the passes in netball, I’ve chased each of them and been chased by each of them, we’ve walked and scootered many kilometers and my favourite – have been kissed and cuddled a million times over!!

We have spent most of the school holidays without Kane as he has worked really long hours and is currently in Sydney for the NRL grand final, but that hasn’t stopped us from having fun, even though we are our happiest when we are all together! It hasn’t been all roses. The first week was close to perfect and then the second week hit, Mia woke with croup and the two older ones started to get on each other’s nerves – but we got through it and not once did I hear anyone say “I’m bored!” Despite some downs, it really has been an awesome two weeks! And this weekend with Kane away the kids have been brilliant! So helpful to me and to each other – so lovely to see!

Now, as we prepare to face another term of work, school, homework and recreational activities, we will cherish the time we have left before Tuesday morning is upon us and we hit the ground running for the next 10 weeks! I hope everyone has had a wonderful time on the school holidays and good luck for the last term of the year – seems so crazy saying this! It’s almost Christmas – OMG!!!!!

School holiday highlights…

20131006-144453.jpg

20131006-144500.jpg

20131006-144513.jpg

20131006-144520.jpg

20131006-144529.jpg

20131006-144548.jpg

20131006-144559.jpg

20131006-144606.jpg

20131006-144618.jpg

20131006-144625.jpg

20131006-144633.jpg

20131006-190342.jpg

20131006-190358.jpg

20131006-190413.jpg

20131006-190430.jpg

20131006-190504.jpg

The Dark Side of Social Media!

Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, Blogspot just to name a few are all fun and games until people start to get nasty! Over the past couple of days, I’ve come across a few bloggers who have felt they had to defend themselves from something they’ve put on their Facebook pages. One mum apologised for ‘bragging’ about something great her children have done and another mum felt she had to defend herself as a ‘fit enough’ mother as she posted a photo of her three children sitting on her kitchen bench! What the?? Seriously people where is the nice positive energy that this already filled with hatred and filth earth needs!!!

I was completely taken aback when I was reading what these mums felt they had to say to clear their names of any misdoing! Last night I was reading a piece from one mum’s blog about how someone had left their condolences for the tragic accidental passing of her young son, but then went on to say how as parents we must never take our eyes off our children. She was guttered. She lives with guilt everyday but some despicable person had to lay judgement and make her feel worse! I’m an avid blogger and Facebook fan. It is my choice to put myself, my life, my thoughts and ideas out there to be judged and scrutinised, but one would hope that people would keep their negative comments to themselves. Thankfully for me, I have had nothing but positive feedback from my viewers and anyone who thinks otherwise has kept their comments to themselves! But obviously that’s not always the case for everyone….

Social media is such a huge part of most people’s everyday lives these days, which can be a good and bad thing, but it really comes with a dark side! I guess like anything it’s great when it’s all positive, but can leave someone feeling terrible when things start turning negative! It’s so easy for someone to leave a nasty comment or statement when they aren’t meeting face to face with people, but it still demonstrates how awful people can be! Quite often I’ll read something on Facebook or in someone’s blog post that I may not agree with, but I would never write anything that would leave a person feeling angry or upset…even if they don’t know me from a bar of soap! Sometimes things are best to be left unsaid!!!

20130721-144811.jpg

The group of people who often are an easy target is usually us mums! And most times it’s other mums having their negative opinion!! It seems to be the minute a parenting topic arises it opens up a can of worms for competition! Or the minute someone is beaming with pride and happiness, someone is swooping in telling them their bad luck story to drag them down – Facebook is so bad for this!!! When I read this week about the mum who apologised for always sharing good news stuff about her life because people left comments about how her ‘happy’ life made them feel bad – it made me think do people feel like that about me?!?! I’m one of those people who instagram, blog and Facebook all the great things that happen in my life!! I could post all the time about the negative stuff, but where would that get me?!?!? I know it takes all types for the world to go round, but it would be so nice if we could all be happy for each other when things are going right and support it each other when things are tough!

I guess the point of writing this blog post is certainly not to stir the social media pot (which is being done enough by a lot of people all over the world) but to post this in the hope that some of the people who don’t think before they comment read this and think twice next time! I know once we decide to post something on a social media forum we leave ourself open to judgement, but it would be nice to think that the good old fashion moral of ‘if you haven’t got anything nice to say then don’t say anything at all’ would apply! My biggest concern from this sort of thing happening now is that kids are jumping on the social media bandwagon younger and younger…like I said above, this world is already full of so much hate and filth, let’s all jump on the positive side of life…it’s so much nicer on this side!!!

20130721-144533.jpg

A Moment of Silence…

Shhh….can you hear that?
It’s a moment of silence!!
No one is speaking, shouting, calling out mummy!
No one is crying, debating, questioning or whingeing.
It’s in this moment of silence that I draw strength from to get through my day…

I love being a mum, the best job in the world, but it can leave you feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and a little bit moody if you don’t take the time to recharge! Being a mum doesn’t mean you are automatically invincible…we are still human and human’s have feelings, emotions and needs to be met. Our priority is our children and making sure they are being nurtured and cared for like treasure, but we as mums still need to look after ourselves so we can keep fighting the good fight each and everyday!

Do you manage to get a moment of silence?
Once the day begins it’s full of feeding, dishes, making lunches, sorting uniforms, homework, dropping kids to school or recreational activities, washing, folding, house work cooking, shopping and spending time playing with the kids! There isn’t a lot of time in there for moments of silence except when you’re sleeping – and if you have a child who is a terrible sleeper, even that doesn’t happen then! I love my moment of silence. Whether it’s for half an hour, two hours or fifteen minutes, it’s enough time for me to regather my thoughts enough to (depending on when it is) start the day or finish off the rest of the day!!

I need this time to debrief with myself over any major issues that are happening, organise stuff without little ones hanging off me or just to rest and rebuild! For my moment of silence to happen I have to be in a good routine and be super organised. It’s taken a while to establish all of this and usually when I’d think I’d gotten it down pat, another baby would come along to make it even more tricky! These days, now the kids are a little older and 2 out of three are in school, I manage a couple of hours a day for my moment of silence while Mia has her day sleep (that’s only on my non working days)! I also exercise about 3-4 hours per week which is another essential part of my life now and allows time for a moment of silence as well:)!

What to you do when you manage a moment of silence?
There are so many things I love to do when I get the chance to have a moment of silence! I’m like a kid in a candy store if I know I have some time ahead of me to myself! Time – that word in the english dictionary should have ‘precious’ next to it, as that is what time is! When I’m granted time to myself I use it wisely and try to utilise it to its maximum!

My moments of silence involve me….
*catching up on my tv shows
*folding washing (I know boring but I don’t like ‘help’ with this job lol)
*blogging
*facebooking
*catching up on messages
*paying bills
*painting my nails/toenails
*straightening my hair
*relaxing on my sun lounge
*running or walking
*instagraming
*crafting

Having a moment of silence doesn’t mean you’re neglecting your job as a mother or wife, especially if it’s incorporated into your daily routine and balanced in with the rest of your crazy busy life! Remember mummas we are only human and if we don’t allow just a little bit of time for ourself each day, life will feel like ground-hog day, which after a while gets mentally frustrating and creates unnecessary angst and stress! And we all know a happy mumma is a better mumma:)!

20130728-190457.jpg

Shopping….Toddler Style!

20130508-193853.jpg

It’s been so long now since I shopped without a child, I’ve almost forgotten what it feels like!!!

Shopping pre-children:
Those were the days when I would rock up at Garden City and leisurely take my time to find a carpark and I wouldn’t care where I parked as long as I found one. I’d fix my clothes up so they were nice and neat, have a quick look at my hair in the mirror and then I’d be slowly on my way to the opening doors. As I walked through the doors I would grin to myself and ask “where to first!”

I would then go from store to store seeking out the things I was looking for, pouncing on any bargain I could find. I would go through every rack if necessary and sometimes spend up to half an hour in one store! I’d have a chat to people in the que and strike up a conversation with the sales assistant as I had all the time in the world! I would take a breather after a couple of hours and have a nice quiet bite to eat and drink and once I’d finished, I continue on my shopping way until I’d gone to every conceivable shop that may have what I was looking for…oh that’s right most times I didn’t go for a purpose I’d go just because I could and LOVED it so much!!!!!!

My how life changes once you become a mum! At first when I only had one child things didn’t change much at all, the only difference was I was pushing a pram and had to stop at a parent’s room to feed and change every couple of hours. But then your baby grows and doesn’t want to be pushed in a pram all day and then learns to talk and tells you exactly what their thoughts are about shopping! Then one child turns into two and in my case three and the only time shopping is at all appealing is when it’s done on the internet! But as challenging as taking kids to the shops can be sometimes, I’ve never stopped going shopping, I just make it really routined and quick!

Shopping post children:
Oh how my head is in a different space at the shops now! Before a shopping trip I now have everything down pat. A list of what I want to buy, before I leave I’ve already thought about where I’m going to park and in which order I will get around. I make sure I have plenty of food and drinks for the kids and my phone is charged!!!! I try and get there as early as I can so I know I won’t spend long finding a car park and once I’m through the doors of the shopping centre, I’m like a greyhound who’s been let out of the cage! People must look at me and think – Geeze what’s the rush! Ummm the fact that I only have a small window of opportunity until all hell could break loose!!! I’m a women on a mission and mission it is trying to squeeze a pram into a clothes shop and dodge all the rides that seem to be every five metres!!!!!! I generally always know now what I want so very little time is spent in one store and because I need to be home by 12 to put Mia down for her nap so she is awake for school pick up, it leaves very little time for a pit stop!

Mia and I ventured to Garden City this morning to start Mother’s Day Shopping. I don’t often go to big shopping centres anymore as we have lots of little ones around our area that are sufficient and only go to big ones when I need something specific. As I ‘tried’ to browse a few shops while passing food, pulling little sticky fingers away from pretty dresses, answering “soon” for the tenth time after being asked “Mia hope out mummy!”, telling Mia the scary man would come if she kept screaming out to me (mean I know but it works lol), I suddenly started thinking how shopping has gone from a leisure activity to a chore lol!

But I seriously wouldn’t have it any other way! Now that it’s just Mia and I who venture to the shops while Bay and Sie are at school, we are in a good routine. I always make Mia stay in her pram or trolley for as long as I can which is about one to one and half hours depending on how much food I’ve brought and once I’m finished I always let her walk for the last part and if there is a little playground and she’s been awesome, she gets a 15 min play. I bring food from home for small shops and when I need to get a heap of things done at the bigger shopping centres I take a lollipop for her:) and grocery shopping days she gets her two cherrios and is always allowed a coin to put in the dog at the end – god bless that dog at woolies:)….it’s the small things in a toddler’s life that go a long way!

Shopping with a toddler or kids in general can be taxing but like anything, if a routine is established with set rules and consistency is applied, it can be quite a pleasurable experience. I only try and go to the shops once a week and I make sure I choose times that I know they’ll be less tired. Although shopping on your own is by far easier, I love that I have someone to chat to while I’m shopping and when the day comes when I have them all in school and I’m left to the freedom of browsing on my own, I’m sure I’ll love it, but have many times when my heart breaks a little that they aren’t there by my side…..because by then I would have been shopping with at least one or two children in tow (except for school holidays) for 10 years!!!!!!

Shopping with a toddler doesn’t do my head in, homework with a 7 year old on the other hand…a topic for a future blog post!

20130508-193719.jpg
My partner in crime:)