Time is of the Essence!

Like sand through the hour-glass…

Does anyone else feel like your days are always under the pump with each second, minute and hour all so precious, in order for your day to be orchestrated just right, so everything you need to get done in a day actually gets done! I know that’s exactly my life. I spend my day clock watching, asking myself ‘what’s the time?!?’. Time for work, time for school, time for appointments, time for training, time for the kids sport, time for my run, time for a function, time to prepare meals, time to pick up kids – there are days where I feel like I don’t have time to breathe! I feel like I’m constantly just behind that sand in the hour-glass and the moments where I feel like I’m in front, some hurdle is put in my way and I’m back behind it again.

From the minute I wake to the minute I sleep at night, each hour is almost planned out with something that has to be done. Time is constantly of the essence and once I reach the end of each school term I feel mostly exhausted from all the planning and organising that is put in to our life staying on track or should I say on time! This thing called time is going so bloody fast! How is it already less than 3 months to Christmas!!!!

With the craziness of what this year has been and how fast it’s gone, I made a promise to myself that these last school holidays would not be about time and I’m happy to say this promise was kept! We had the best two weeks – the September school holidays are always my favourite! Each day was fun, slow-paced, no timelines, just get ready when we want, leave when we want and go home when we want! It was bliss! It was the time the kids and I really needed. We even managed some time as a family with Kane! We covered almost everything – theme parks, playgrounds, movies, shopping, baking, swimming, the beach and lots of relaxing! The kids were happy, well-behaved and got along so nicely!

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School holidays is such precious time for us now that both Saturday and Sundays are consumed by the kid’s sport through the winter months of the year! Thank goodness sport breaks for the holidays. Now that we are down to only 4 days of sport a week and our Sundays are finally free, we can cruise a little on the weekends and it leaves more time to hang together and socialise with family and friends – that’s what life is about!

After a dreadful third term, I was determined to start this term being the most positive I could be, hoping that would set the vibe for the term. It did start off much better than last term and I’ve been on time to everything so far, but as each day went by this week and the anticipation of getting back into routine with a child who suffers anxiety, the week became hard. I live in hope that this will settle a lot quicker than last term though. But for now, on days where the going is getting tough, I will look back at all the beautiful photos that captured our awesome holiday together!

Time is really of the essence for me now. The coming weeks are so precious as this is the last term that I will have a child home with me. With my baby starting prep next year, this will be my 10th and final year of having a side kick on my days off….whatever will I do?!?! I’m so use to stopping and starting jobs, having someone to ‘help’ me with my chores. I’m so use to having someone to chat with (whether I’m in the mood or not heheheheh), all I know is that it’s going to be extremely quiet!!!!! So as the time gets closer to being on my own, I will be relishing in my time with my baby girl and hoping that this time passes by steadily!

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Here’s to an awesome final school term….bring on summer and the festive season!!!!

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Anxious Annies…Finding a Balance to Cope as the Parent!

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I’ve been absent from the blogging world for the past month. A month that has zapped me of my energetic soul. A month where I feel I’ve been put through the wringer and I’m trying to dry out. A month that has seen us all sick and battling this exceptionally cold winter we are having. A month that has been very trying to say the least. Although the kids are still at the tail end of being sick, I’m feeling so much better than I was as I can feel my head is above water once again!

If you are a regular follower of my blog you would know that two out of three of my children (eldest and youngest) suffer anxiety and my son’s anxiety is accompanied with OCD and a motor and vocal tic. He’s been having therapy since the end of last year and up until a month ago he was in the best place he’s ever been.

His anxiety had almost vanished, his OCD was minimal and his tics were so mild you could hardly notice. Then term 3 hit and so did Bailey – like a tidal wave!! The past month has seen so much work that we’ve all done become undone and it’s left us feeling overwhelmed and vulnerable at the prospect of the future. Just when you feel like you’ve got a grip on things a curve ball is always thrown…

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Anxiety or any mental health issue for that matter, can be so debilitating and not only for the person suffering with it, but for the people who surround them on a daily basis. Going through the same speech pattern to reassure them everyday, picking up the pieces after a melt down, handing out consequences for inappropriate actions, waiting for the next situation to occur…it’s extremely hard work and intense.

I’ve changed my whole attitude towards it all as of late. Whenever my children’s anxiety are at a peak, I always find myself using it as a reflection of our parenting. But the reality is, there isn’t anything we’ve changed, it’s something in them that has been triggered by something that surrounds them and all I can do is put the measures in place to help them deal with the rough times and always enjoy the good times.

As the parent dealing with what feels like a cyclone, it’s important to find a balance in life in order to maintain your own mental health. Instead of constantly laying there at night wondering what the hell am I going to do next, I find ways to help bring out my inner calm and peace. If that means, online browsing (and few purchases lol) then I do. I make sure I regularly get my hair done and I’m even going to treat myself to getting my nails done every few weeks from now on! Exercise and running is my savour and having chats with my mum and sisters…well I don’t know what I’d do without them. My husband and I are lucky to have wonderful friends who we enjoy having time out with and of course if we get the chance to have a date night – we jump at it!

When I read this last paragraph back to myself, it made me feel vein and like I’m giving up! But it’s the complete opposite. Doing the things I love for myself gears me up to be the best parent I can be, to children who suffer anxiety and if having pretty nails while dealing with this is what I have to do – then I will lol! It’s not an easy gig by any means and having one child who doesn’t suffer anxiety (finally her separation anxiety has passed) I know how much easier parenting could be if my two other children didn’t carry a monkey around on their backs – so to speak.

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All of these things that I do to keep myself sane, allows me to get up each day and face whatever is thrown my way. This all needs to be balanced with fitting in one on one time with each child. I believe families who live the cycle we do, need to make a priority to each individual child. You not only have the child who suffers, but the child or children who don’t put up with a lot and give up things just to keep the peace. I find that having time alone with each child is a lovely way to get back on track if the pathway to happiness has had a bump in it!

Keeping positive amongst everything is a key to my daily mantra. I try my hardest everyday to maintain a positive attitude towards life. Don’t get me wrong, I have my people who I sound off to…we all need someone who we can release our inner thoughts too. I’ve had quite a few people lately message me and tell me how positive I always am. Such a lovely compliment. I would far rather celebrate the good that’s in my life rather than reliving the daily struggles we face at home. These moments are moments we learn from…the great moments are memories created and they are the things I want to share and shout to this world. Because although life throws curve balls, the goodness always out ways them!

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Our life for now will always be full of consistent routines, clear rules, boundaries and consequences, early bedtimes, debriefing sessions and conscious thought put into down time. We always plan new outings and go through new experiences with the kids well before it’s going to happen, to help eliminate any anxiety attacks. But our life is full of greatness. We don’t ever miss out. We may go through hell to get to the goodness, but we always get there. One day we’ll be able to take the short cut, but for now most of our journeys involve the long way round but we always get there in the end!

I wish everyday our anxious annies didn’t struggle. It breaks my heart when I see them faced with a situation that is overwhelming for them. But together my husband and I will never give up. We will always go above and beyond to help them be the best version of themselves!

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A Complete 360….

You often hear “if only time stood still!” I’ve been thinking that so much of late. As each week passes this year, I am getting closer and closer to having my last baby go to school. The shear thought of this makes me feel sick to my core. I still remember that feeling when Bailey and Sienna started school, but I always had another child to keep me busy so I didn’t have time to really feel those raw emotions. 10 years of having babies, watching them grow and develop into little preppies and once Mia starts prep next year, my life will bring a whole new world!

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Last week I saw a snapshot of what my life will be like next year when I drop all three kids off at school. For the first time since before I became a mum, I dropped Mia at mum’s place for some much needed nanny and Mia time (requested by both parties) and then went to the shops. I met up with a girlfriend, we shopped, had morning tea and ended my expedition with an hour massage. 5 hours to myself on a school day – unheard of – and obviously it’s going to be like this everyday!!! I’m not going to lie – I had a great day, but was bursting for Mimi cuddles by the time I picked her up!

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Mia was such hard work last year. There were times when I questioned – how will I ever get through to her going to Prep and still be sane?!?! But since returning from our trip to the States, turning 4 and starting preschool, she has matured so much and her smart and funny character is the highlight of my day. We have so much fun together and our conversations are amazing. She is my mini me, my shadow, the one who I can turn to when the two older ones come home cranky from a big day at school…I think I’ll be spending a lot of time talking to our dog Sonny next year lol!

There will be a lot of adjusting to begin with, but I know I will learn to enjoy time to myself again. I can’t believe my life has almost done a full 360!!! I will go from “mum this and mum that” to silence. Pushing a pram or holding a little hand to strolling through the shops and leaving without indigestion from shoving my lunch down, before needing to go home for day time naps. My time will be able to be spent a lot more effectively fitting in many more jobs as I’ll be able to be a lot more efficient – it’ll be weird finishing a job without stopping 10 times lol!

I’ve already starting putting a few things in place that’ll I’ll be working on from next year. It’s amazing how many options you’re faced with once you’ve been granted time. I was only saying to one of my friends last week – “how can anyone be bored in life – the options are endless!!!!” Some of my options are: studying my masters, starting a fashion blog, relief teaching in my kid’s school, planning our next trip to the States, moving house and of course working on my next running adventure!! I don’t think I’ll ever find myself lost in the silence of all my children at school!

It’s been a long 10 years with the constant health issues all three kids have presented with, but the light at the end if this tunnel is getting brighter as each year passes which is fantastic!! We are getting to such a great place in our lives with the kids. They all so independent and helpful now, I actually get to spend more quality time with them as the cores around the house are now done by everyone! Yesterday was a classic example of this…before we went to basketball everyone was given a part of the house to tidy up and within 5 mins the house was spotless. The girls also cleaned out the car yesterday while Bay did his project and I pottered around doing other chores…a complete 360!!!!

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Looking back over the years I’ve been lucky enough to be at home with my babies, they will always go down as the greatest years of my life. They haven’t been perfect. They have been hard at times and full of hurdles that together as a party of 5 we have jumped hand in hand together. But one thing is for sure, I’ve loved every moment and will always miss this time for the rest of my life.

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My aim has always been to start each day fresh and always put one foot forward in front of the other. Some days this has been simple and other days this has been a drag. But I can honestly say with each step forward I’ve definitely climbed a huge mountain and as I look back at the mountain I’ve climbed, I’m very proud of what has been accomplished. I now will look forward to the new phase of my life and can’t wait to experience the ‘older’ years with my babies!

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Have Courage….Be Kind!

This week has been a week to reflect on life and what it has to offer. It’s been a week of devastating news left right and centre and with celebrating the 100th anniversary of Anzac Day, the title of this blog couldn’t be more fitting!

As I sat and watched my childhood favourite story Cinderella on Wednesday with my little girl and mum, the moral and values of this story are ones that every human should be exposed to…have courage, be kind! If only we all did this more readily. It made me stop and reflect as a parent – am I showing my own children this?!? I think I do? Do I use these words?!? Not enough. And it’s my job as their mother, to not only model this behaviour, but emerge them in this language.

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I find myself using the words brave and nice a lot, but my new words now will be courageous and kind. If only every child knew what this looked like and felt like, I believe there would be less crime and hatred in this world. I believe if we were more kind to each other, this would create a ripple effect and filter through as a common denominator. I believe in pay it forward…be kind to someone, that person would be kind to someone else….

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You only have to read some of the awful things that are evident on social media to realise how much hatred is in this world. The biggest one that sticks in my mind lately is the lady that received an anonymous letter from some of her “Facebook friends” letting her know that they were sick of seeing pictures of her baby daughter in their newsfeed?!? What the!!! Who does that? This is an example of 1. No self-control, 2. No tolerance, 3. Too much time to waste and 3. It’s down right mean!!!! The good old saying ‘if you have nothing nice to say then don’t say anything’ needs to be applied a lot more these days.

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If we were more kind to each other, then just maybe the word “bullying” would start to vanish from the school yard and instead children would have their minds more free to be courageous! Courageous – ?!?! Never give up, strive for your best, have a go even when the odds are against you! Too often you see people just give up these days! When the going gets tough so often you see people just throw their hands up in the air and say “whatever!” ?!?! When and how did this become such a common behaviour?!?!

Anzac Day, is one of those times of the year where you hear non stop courageous stories of the brave men and women who fought for our country to allow us the life we have today…they never gave up! This is also evident in the many men and women who bravely take on a position in any of our defence forces to this day! It was so nice to march with our children for the first time on Anzac Day this year. They proudly wore their grandfather’s medals and asked many questions along the way. If this is one way to help them strive to be their best and learn about being courageous, then it’s definitely worth it.

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I’m so lucky to have seen many people in my life who have been courageous and display courage everyday of their life. For me at the moment, knowing someone who is fighting a health battle with courage are the ones that I hold with the up most respect. My nana will always be one of the most courageous people I’ve met. Watching her and how she handled having Parkinson’s disease, without complaints, but still being able to enjoy the small things in life right up until she was unable to, this makes me want to be the best I can be and never give up!

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Have courage…be kind! It starts from us as parents. We need to believe these words before we can teach our children to do so. If Cinderella can love and live happily ever after, after the tragedies she endured, then I think it’s fair to say we can all try to be more kind and courageous! Cinderella may be a fictional character, but I’m sure we all know a Cinderella…for me it’s my beloved nana!

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Courage shown…lessons learnt!

Friday was a long time coming. After hearing about cross-country for the past 4 years, Bailey was finally old enough to compete. At Runcorn Heights, the first time for a student to compete in cross-country is the year they turn 9. Bay has been waiting in anticipation for so long to take on this challenge. He couldn’t wait to start training for it. Due to my work commitments and Bay’s music commitments, he wasn’t able to get to school for the scheduled training sessions, so he trained with me.

We’ve had a ball training together. It’s been so awesome teaching him about something that is my passion. It’s also been a great time to bond and spend quality time together. I’m just so proud of how far he has come with his perseverance and determination. He really inspires me:)

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When we started training together 6 weeks ago, Bay was in quite a bad way. His anxiety was overwhelming and his motor and vocal tics were at their peak. Watching him struggle each day was breaking our hearts and we were doing everything we could to keep him calm and happy. At times cross-country training brought out the best and worst in him depending on his state of mind. But when he was focused he was amazing. To date his longest tun without stopping is 3k and his fastest km is 5.16 mins…am so chuffed for him:)

This past week leading up to cross-country has been a trying one. Anxiety started kicking in early in the week as he was worried that he wouldn’t know where to run. He was worried that he would get lost – which is his biggest fear in life! But once he was reassured by his PE teacher who walked the course with him, he started to settle. Then two mouth ulcers formed in his mouth and the morning of the cross-country he woke with a sore throat.

My whole speech to him all week was “mate it doesn’t matter where you place as long as you do your very best and have FUN!” That is my mantra for everything!!! He had his little heart set on age champion – dreams are free right?!? We all wished things like this didn’t we?!? Bay puts so much pressure on himself to be the best. It’s great to be passionate and have goals, but I worry that he misses the fun of it all!!

His race wasn’t until after morning tea at 11.30 – it was such a hot and humid day, really it was too hot for cross-country! He sat very quiet and patiently watching all the races before him. He was taking it ALL in. As he lined up on the line, the tallest 9-year-old by far, his face told the story! He wanted it soooo bad. The gun went off and all you saw was my son and his bright watermelon shoes shoot off like a canon. The first thing I thought was “not too fast Bay!!”

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He led for a fair bit of the race but the speed he started with was starting to punish him at the half way mark. Mum saw him with about 300m to go and he was hurting. As I stood at the finishing line waiting for the brightness of his shoes to catch my eye, three other boys came round the corner one by one. I was worried Bay was collapsed somewhere on the course but alas, he was still upright. As he ran the last 100m he had two boys right on his coattails, but he never gave up and pumped those legs to cross the line and receive 4th place…that’s when he did collapse….He was pale. He was delirious. He ended up vomiting. He ran that race with every bit of fighting fibre of his being and he did us bloody proud!

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Once he came back to earth and was back to being coherent, we debriefed the race. I told him how proud I was of him for never giving up. I know what running pain, stitches and heat exhaustion is like. It’s so easy just to stop and walk, it’s the hardest thing to keep going and push through that pain and he did! We spoke about the art of long distance running and how you have to pace yourself and not go out so hard and even though we trained to pace and sprint at the end, I think nerves may have gotten the better of him! Although he didn’t say it out loud, I could tell he was disappointed, but after lots of encouragement and praise from so many people, Bay went to bed that night feeling very proud of himself and super happy that Cunningham won the cross-country carnival!!!

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An added bonus was having his older cousin KB as vice captain:)

As his mother, and a running mother as well, this whole experience has left me inspired. If my son can push through that pain he did on Friday, I’ll always be able to as well. So when I set out to complete my 17k yesterday morning, there were times where I was hurting, but thinking of Bay helped me to push through and take over 2 mins off my 17k pb! Kids are inspiring…no mater what age or ability they have, they really are courageous little human beings!!

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Whatever Will I Do?!?!

From the moment I wake to the moment I go to bed at night, my day is full of busyness and endless parenting responsibilities. I feed kids, prepare them for school, fill out forms for school, make and take them to appointments. I take them to school, pick them up from school, help them with homework, cook dinner, make sure the house is clean, grocery shop, wash our clothes, get them to their extra curricular activities and teach two days a week! Each day is different with the intension of the same outcome – making sure we’re happy!

I love my life, I really do. Some days are hard, some days are simple, some days I wouldn’t want to repeat, but I truly feel blessed for what I have! I’m so use to running around like a chook with its head cut off. I’m so use to having someone hanging off me or calling out mum for the 100th time that day. There are moments where I get so tired I just want 5 minutes of peace and I do get that – at night from 7.30 when all kids are asleep that is my time of peace! And of course every kilometre I run helps me to regain and regather my thoughts to start my day. I’m so use to going and going and going I find it hard to STOP!

Then when I get the chance to stop and do something for myself, I flounder. I sit, think and wonder “what are the kids doing?!?” I wander around looking at things the kids would like. As I write this blog I’m on MY OWN on a plane to Melbourne for two hours, where I will spend the next 48 hours without one of my children in the same state as I let alone next to me. Whatever will I do?!? Mums always wish for this time and I don’t know about you but when I’m given it, I struggle to be without my children. After a day at work I can’t wait to get home to the kids!!

It’s been a while since I went away by myself, but this time I feel different and I think it’s because the kids are all that bit older. Normally I start to feel anxious the day before and the morning of leaving them. In the past I’ve almost talked myself out of doing this type of thing and it’s always my husband saying “just go and enjoy yourself!” Well there was no anxiety this time and for the first time ever I was just excited!!!!…..

I’m now back on the plane and I must say although we’ve had a fabulous weekend, I’m extremely excited to have my babies wrap their arms around me. I’ve missed their sweet little kisses and I love yous. I’ve missed the way they make me laugh and our insightful conversations. I know they’ve been loved and nurtured by their father all weekend, but I have wondered…”I wonder what the girl’s hair looks like?!?” lol!

This weekend has been a huge confidence booster for me when it comes to taking time out for myself. I never felt selfish and I didn’t feel less about myself as a mother. We are allowed to have these moments and not feel guilty and what a moment it was! The main reason for this weekend was to see Dirty Dancing. It was our birthday present from mum and dad – the best birthday present ever! The show was unbelievably amazing. Just like the movie – music, lines, costumes and all. And Johnny…well lets just say we had Hungry Eyes for him!

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After the show we went to the crown casino and ate the most amazing buffet. 2 hours of food, chatting and laughing – what more could a girl want and with the most amazing women…my mum, sisters and aunty. No one had any luck on the gambling side, but that’s ok:)!

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This morning we were up and out early so we could head back into the city to compete in the Run for Kids 5.4km race. I’ve been running for 3 and a half years now and this was my first official event. My aim was to run 5k in sub 24 minutes. This was no easy feat as I battled hundreds and hundreds of people, prams, scooters, bottle neck hills and drink stations, but to my excitement I reached 5km in 23.56 and ran the total course of 5.4km in 24.42…what a thrill!!!! This run also brought home how lucky I am to have 3 healthy children. Many people competed in this event today to honour their loved ones. It was quite emotional seeing photos and dates printed on their shirts in remembrance of their babies.

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Our last stop for the day was the always famous Queen Victoria Markets. I must say they aren’t as good as they use to be and I only walked away with a bracelet and something for the kids…my favourite part was my corn on the cob:/ Next Melbourne trip WILL involve a lot more shopping:)

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Melbourne is a great place to visit and we were able to see quite a bit of the city this weekend. I’ve been many times, but it’s always great to see new places and try new things. And of course the main reason we go is to see my beautiful sister and her family. It’s always great to see them as it’s been quite a while since we have! And to top the weekend off the weather was amazing! Cold mornings and nights but sun shining days!

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As I’m half an hour off landing I will enjoy this last moment of time to myself. It has been nice to sleep more peacefully, toilet and shower without anyone barging in, finish a conversation and eat without getting indigestion. It’s been a full on start to this year and this weekend is something I’ve needed to recoup and move forward. I’m all of that now and with only 2 weeks until school holidays I’m ready – lets do this babies and then we have 2 weeks together!

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Mumma Duck and her Three Little Helpful Ducklings!

Who can believe two weeks of school is done and dusted already!!! If this is any indication of how fast the year is going to go, we’ll be putting up the Christmas tree before we know it!!!

How is the hustle and bustle of the school term going for you so far?

Now that we have the first full week under our belts, we are full steam ahead with school and even sport starting as well! From next week we will have something on every day between work, sport and Bailey’s therapy…did someone say holiday?!? What holiday? Feels like 6 months ago we were OS – take me back PLEASE!!!!

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20150208-190451.jpg But what would life be if our children didn’t engage in extra curricular activities?!? I know the answer to that lol but it’s so vital for their development and wouldn’t have it any other way!

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20150208-190620.jpg Now that the kids are another year older and our lives are busier than ever, my expectations of them this year has risen to a whole new level! I wrote a blog a couple of years ago about giving the kids chores and teaching them to be more responsible. While this worked for a while, with Sienna in prep that year, it proved to be too hard and she was completely exhausted and Bay spent his time asking why do I if Sienna doesn’t?!? Cutting them some slack, I stipulated one rule – “no jobs, means no pocket-money, but when I ask you to do something you do it without backchat or arguing!” (This has been a rule since they were toddling anyway)! This has worked well for the past couple of years, but I’ve now upped the anti!!!

During our 7 weeks holiday together, they were constantly reminded and warned how things would be this year. With Mia starting preschool and having them all going somewhere the days I work, means less for my mum to help out with and more for us to be responsible for. We’ve negotiated 5 jobs each with the kids and Mia has 2 jobs and so far our routine is working well. If the jobs have been done well without constant reminders, Bailey and Sienna receive $5 a week and Mia receives a gold coin!

Bailey’s Jobs:

*make your bed

*get clothes ready for school

*take washing off the line

*give the dog water

*take the bins out

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*make your bed

*get clothes ready for school

*check the mail

*feed the dog

*set the table

20150208-190858.jpg Mia’s Job’s: *make your bed

*empty the bins

20150208-191005.jpg Each job helps me immensely in the running of the house from day-to-day, week to week, especially on my work days! And of course the rule of do what I ask without arguing is an everlasting rule for everyone!! I’m really proud of how we work as a team. We always discuss with the kids how important it is for us to work together for our busy life to be. The kids are managing their jobs really well and even doing most of them without being reminded!

I often take the time to look around and watch the day unfold, particularly our morning routine and it’s great to see my little ducklings being so helpful and following in the footsteps of their mumma duck!

I’m really seeing my hard work as a parent pay off as of late and it’s really worth putting in the effort! I know its early days yet and as the term goes by and the kids become tired and more busy, it’s not going to be all roses. But like I always do each and everyday of my parenting life, I will enjoy the highs and hold on tight and not give up on the lows!
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Untying of the Knot!

The time has arrived. After being home for the past 4 years and tied to either myself or my mum’s apron string, Mia’s knot has been untied and she is now officially a preschooler!

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This moment has been discussed and prepared for over the past few months and although we knew it had to happen, it always leaves me with an empty and sad feeling. The thought of Mia being in the care of someone unfamiliar to her and the fact that she is my baby and the last one to enter the world of education, was always going to leave me feeling an overwhelming sense of emotions.

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For the past 4 years, it’s been mum and I nurturing and caring for Mia. We’ve been the ones to teach her numbers, colours and shapes. We have been the ones to encourage her to be independent, give her cuddles and kisses when she is sick, reassure her when she is scared. We’ve read millions of books, sung a trillion of songs and been there to wipe her tears when she’s fallen or become overwhelmed by her fears. We have, WE have!!!

For me this isn’t the end of this road. I’m still lucky enough for Mia to go to preschool the two days I work and spend the rest of the week at home doing what we love to do best – hang out together!! But for my mum, this is the end of the road for her baby caring days. For 14 years mum has looked after each grandchild, one by one until they reach their preschool age…Mia is the last grandchild to do this! What a huge end of an era. My sisters and I were so blessed to have our mother by our side until we went to school…our children have also been blessed to have their nanny for the same time! I thank my mother from the bottom of my heart for being there for my children while I’ve worked. Mum has spent my part-time working days nurturing and educating my children just as I would. It’s been so comforting while my babies have been little to know they’ve had the next best thing to their mumma when I haven’t been there…nanny you are one in a million!!

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And so Mia’s first week of preschool is over and done with already and she’s about to start her second week! She did a lot better than I thought she would do and am very proud of her. There were tears upon drop off and she was scared and apprehensive particularly on the first day, but on her second day she was an active participant in her class. She is currently experiencing separation anxiety like her big sister, but she is letting herself embrace the life of a preschooler a lot sooner than Sienna did.

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Having already gone through separation anxiety with Sienna, I’m not as worried this time. I know from experience that Mia will settle. It just takes time. I know that she has an awesome teacher and staff at her centre that nurture her and make her feel safe which makes me feel better. I’m certainly riding the karma train as I did this to my mum lol! Turning 4 next month is a big step in a little person’s life! Since coming back from America, we’ve seen a huge shift in Mia’s confidence and independence and she has already been telling me that she is 4 now lol! But she’s still young and innocent. She still has meltdowns when she is extremely tired, is as stubborn as a mule and has her own Mia idiosyncrasies, but she’s socially engaging and developing like she should which makes me one happy mumma!

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So with the new school year officially starting on Tuesday, the knot for everyone will be untied. Apart from me working 3 days last week, the kids have been by my side for 7 weeks. Bay is keen to go back to school but my little separation anxiety baby is already telling me she is going to miss me! I know how she feels, it was hard to leave them last week, especially after our amazing holiday!! But everyone is ready. All books are covered, bags are packed, uniforms have been tried on and ready to go. This year will be a year where we stand on our two feet and not rely on mum as much. This will be a new challenge for everyone. But we WILL make it work – provided we work together as a party of 5! It really is the year of untying of many knots….!!

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Here’s to a fantastic school year!!!

“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…

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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:)!

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