Sunday Chores…

Today is Sunday, and I have spent the day doing something that I have put off for the last few weeks. *ahem*, OK.  For the last few months…putting away all the clean clothes that sit in basket in the middle of our living area.  I think it is appropriate that they are in the middle of the living area, because it makes it so much more convenient to get pour clothes each morning. Friends talk about their ‘floordrobe’.  Well, this is our ‘basket-drobe’, though floordrobe sounds better!

It feels so great to have this all done. For a moment I am one of those people.  You know the people.  The ones that are organised with a clean house and they never have to apologise for it.  Are you one of those people?  But sadly it is short lived.  I have a load of washing in the dryer, and another in the washing machine…

Getting these clothes put away led me to cleaning out my wardrobe, which made me learn a few things about myself.

  • I have many pairs of pyjamas.  None of which I actually bought for myself.  They have all been gifts.  No more pj’s please.  And I still wear an old t-shirt to bed!
  • I must have the largest collection of Diesel jeans known to man (& woman). I have bought all these online because Diesel jeans from a retailer are ridiculously expensive. Of the approx. 7 pairs of Diesel jeans, I would say that 1 pair fits me.  And they are the ones I wear on a daily basis.
  • The collection of Diesel jeans is followed closely by my collection of white t-shirts. And yes, every single one has a stain that renders it useless for wearing in public.
  • I have also ended up with a big pile of clothes to go to the Salvos.  Most of those came from the Salvos to begin with, and the rest were hand my downs from my sister.  I like to reduce, reuse and recycle!

After weeks of struggling every morning to find clothes to wear to work, I was being reduced to wearing the same thing every day. I now know that I have heaps of clothes, and I actually know where they all are.

My fear is that in the morning I still won’t be able to work out what to wear to work, because I have too much choice!

What are you doing with your Sunday?

 

….Come on summer, start already…

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boys night out…with Mum…

I am single mumming it this week while Richard is away.

I was driving home from work tonight and thought I just could not face cooking dinner, so when I got home I floated the idea of eating out. Two out of three boys voted yes, so majority rules, and we decided to go out for Chinese.

It started with a trip to the bottle shop – for me, not the boys! Whilst in the queue Arch, who is my ever-loving boy, decided to tell me he loved me. He is divine and I think it melted the heart of everyone in the queue. He was a bit embarrassed with the comments.

Then off to Chinese. And how lucky are we to run into friends who were also having a family dinner at the local Chinese (*waving* hi Derek and Kara).

After dinner we stop in at the local IGA for dog food and treats for us. I’m saving mine to eat in bed while reading a book.  I am such a party girl.

Boys came home, gobbled their treats and are now on a sugar high.

An hour past their bed time and they are still up, enthralled, watching ‘Redesign your brain’…at least it is educational…

I loved my boys company tonight. They are funny, smart, adoring, adorable, and annoying – all in one.

A big night out with Mum…

Thankful Thursday at its best…

 

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full as a goog…

Wow my head has been full lately (which has made me absent from my beloved blog). Full of what? There are a few people (who may or may not be related to me) who would say ‘not much’!

But it’s true. My head is full.

Full of dyslexia and dyscalculia – so much time spend researching and trying to create ways to help him learn and show him that he has an ability rather than a disability).

Full of meetings with teachers and working out plans for the next year.

Full of work and going through a merger that leaves me see-sawing between ‘this sucks’ and ‘this will be great’. I’m sitting on the fence at the moment.

Full of trying to work out ways to get our house renovated before it falls down around our ears.

Full of trying to instil in the boys how important it is to have goals and be working towards something. Anything.

Full of just trying to get the boys ready for school before I go to work.

Full of working out how to fulfil my own personal goals and feed my creative outlets and needs.

Full of trying to get a vegie patch going that I haven’t looked at for 3 weeks.

Full of trying to be an involved mother who is creating memories and a strong value base within my children.

Full of trying to get the motivation to start exercising and lose weight (this is on my mind more than I would like. It looks like I will actually have to exercise! OMG).

Full of worrying about those 3 boys, and their health, wellbeing and happiness.

So full, that sometimes I have to pull the plug and let it all empty out. I think that now is one of those times. Drain all the thinking, and let it just be…

Phew…

 

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^^^Time for another outing I think…

A couple of thoughts for the day…

You know, sometimes those annoying motivational and spiritual quotes strike a chord! Which I guess is what they are meant to do….

Anyway, two have really resonated with me this week, and I thought I would share them just in case they hit the right note with you too.

Ok, here they are….

Life does not need to be perfect to be wonderful

and

Talk about your blessings more than you talk about your burdens

I read the first quote on a blog by an American woman whose son suffered a brain injury rendering him incapacitated and something happened to her husband that made him go blind! I can’t remember the blog, but if I come across it again I will share it.

I also learnt something today. This morning I spoke at a morning tea at my children’s school about the path we have gone down in discovering our Max’s dyslexia and dyscalculia and the journey that this is taking us on. It reinforced to me that so many people are just desperate for help and advice about their children, and dyslexia in particular. Australia is so far behind the rest of the world in this space. Autism and Asperger’s are the condition’s that everyone knows about and gets the funding, and I feel that is to the detriment of dyslexia and other related learning disabilities (that’s just my opinion, so if you disagree, that’s fine, but I don’t really want to hear about it ba ha ha ha ha).

Anyway, that is my gem for today.

I DIY’d…

I have DIY’d my arse off lately! As per usual I have a few half-done projects, such as…
Kitchen splashback
Talking of half-done projects, my kitchen has been half renovated for many years, and I don’t have a splashback. I wanna splashback!! I want something a bit different, and not too expensive. Everyone one has glass nowadays, so I don’t want glass. I wanted a really groovy and ‘out there’ tile, but my husband won’t let me. So what I have come up with is wall paper. I have done a test with several wall papers on some mdf that I have varnished.
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^^^ These are my sample papers. My fave is the one on the left.

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^^^ I have it sitting behind the stove to test the durability.

I used a spray varnish, but when I do it for real I will use a roll on varnish to get a thick glossy look. The spray wasn’t thick enough.

My benchtops at the moment are laminate, but I want to use Ardex Feather Finish to do a hardy concrete render on the bench top.  Check out a tutorial about it here.
Blanket

This is my second half finished crocheted blanket! This one will be about 25 cm of grey, with a fluoro stripe, then grey, then stripe, then grey… I think you get the idea. Like it so far??
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Vegetable garden
I have saved the best until last! I have a half done orchard with various attempts at a veggie patch each year (are you sensing a theme here?). I have about 10-12 sad fruit trees, 3 chooks, a pile of wood, and my most recent attempt at a veggie patch was garden beds in special plastic ‘bags’. I really wanted a real veggie patch, so I have sorted and moved a huge pile of timber that was also in my orchard that my husband has had sitting there for years. It was a from a friend’s old car port that they took down with hubby’s intention of us using it for god knows what.

ARch & chook

^^^ I always have to include a picture of this boy with his chook…

I moved all the wood.

I sorted all the wood.

I picked out the good pieces for edging the garden beds. I also found a few good pieces to make a table top for a potting table.

I got brackets, screws and my husband’s handy dandy electric drill, AND I MADE 4 VEGGIE PATCH GARDEN BEDS!! And made the table top.  Woo hoo! Very empowering.

 

veggie patch part done veggei patch 1

 

^^^ Can you see my table top at the back leaning against the fence?  I just need legs for it now…

I only had enough soil to fill one of them, so the rest can wait until next weekend, because I tell you, I ache.

Every. Single. Muscle. Aches.

So I am going to try and bribe my boys to give me a massage while I look through my gardening books and plan all the vegetables I will grow.

Did I mention that I ache?

Give a little…

I’m sure we all give a bit of money to charity here and there.  It could be giving money to the tin rattlers at traffic light, selling raffle tickets for charity, or sponsoring someone raising money for cancer research.

But it isn’t often that you get to see the actual results of your donation.

Well, this week I did, and it made me cry (as per usual).

I have been going through a spate of donating lately (I will list the causes at the end of this blog in case you want to give a little too!), so have sponsored a few friends, clients and family members in their various pursuits to raise money for medical research in lots of different areas. $10 here and $20 there.  And I hope that in my lifetime I see some sort of result for everyone’s time and effort.

A few weeks ago, maybe even a couple of months ago, I noticed something on Facebook about a New Zealand Dad, Robbie Ritchie, who had a life threatening condition in his brain with an 80% chance of having a brain haemorrhage. He needed an operation that could only be done at the International Neuroscience Institute in Germany.  The more I read about this family and their need to raise $200,000 to be able to go to Germany, pay for the operations and remain there for several weeks, I just felt that I had to do something.

So I donated my $20 and kept an eye on their story. I learned of all their fundraising efforts in New Zealand, their angst at leaving their little boys back home whilst they went to Germany and their nervousness on the eve of the operation.  I felt nervous for them too.

Well yesterday Robbie had his surgery, and he came through it all ok.  I breathed a sigh of relief for this family that I don’t know and never will know.

It was so rewarding to be able to see the result of the money I donated, even though it was a drop in the ocean of the $156,000 that they raised.

I will still continue to donate money to people who are committing their time and effort to raise money for a cause they have been touched by, but I will also keep an eye out for those causes that will have an immediate effect. There is nothing better!

Robbie Ritchie’s Story

https://www.facebook.com/RobbieNeedsHisBrainFixed?ref=ts&fref=ts

https://www.givealittle.co.nz/cause/robbieneedshisbrainfixed

http://fixrobbiesbrain.wordpress.com/

 

Other causes I have donated to lately…support them where you can…

 

http://relay.cancercouncil.com.au/2013/wagga_wagga_relay_for_life_67/Elders-Wagga-Wagga

Sponsor my sister Jane Whitlock and niece Ellie Taylor in Relay for Life…

 

http://register.gongride.org.au/2013-Sydney-to-Gong-Bike-Ride/natalie11479

Sponsor my colleague Natalie as she is riding to raise money for MS research…

 

http://ml14.endcancer.org.au/site/TR/Events/Melbourne2014?px=1036130&pg=personal&fr_id=1090

Sponsor my client Michele as she raises money to end Women’s cancers…

 

I am also part of a group of girls who get together every 6 weeks or so.  We each take $20 for the kitty (and a bottle of wine for the fun)…and when we get enough money together we donate money or vouchers anonymously to local causes.  If you are located on the Mornington Peninsula and want in on this one, let me know!

A few pics from our Sunday jaunt last weekend…

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Hurrah for the weekend…

What a week! The company I work for is merging with another company, with the leaders from the second company coming in to run our company (a takeover of sorts – if that makes sense at all). A part of this is that I have been in a strategy planning meeting for the last 2 days with managers from each organisation planning a way forward. Going down this path has raised so many thoughts and questions, particularly since I don’t know if I will have a role in this new entity. And then begs the question, do I even want a role in this new entity?

I have been going on this journey for the last couple of months, and it has created so many situations and interesting (& bizarre) scenarios that I would love to blog about, but just can’t until things at work are formalised and finalised. But in six weeks’ time, look out for my rants and insights about the world of merging companies and the effect on the people involved!

So what am I doing in the meantime whilst I am in limbo?

Pondering priorities – what is really important in this one life that we get?
Feeling grateful – for my good health and the health of the people who I love.
Looking at all my options – is this an opportunity to following my passions, or make a change that provides better balance? Are there other options available that I haven’t considered?
Deep breathing – whenever I start to freak out at the instability of it all, I take deep breaths!! Many of them.
Enjoying time with family and friends!

Monday starts a new week and who knows what it will bring. Until then it is the WEEKEND! Woo hoo….Enjoy…..

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^^^a bit of sunshine joy^^^

My Wednesdays…

A couple of months ago I changed from working full time to having Wednesdays off.  Oh, I love it!  In preparation for all of the extra time I would have, I bought canvasses to paint, fabrics to sew, and glass to mould in my kiln. I had dreams of spending the day taking photos, having a tidy and calm house, and feeling refreshed for the rest of the week. The projects I had in mind, oh the projects! Did I mention my vegie patch? And the exercise, all the exercise I was going to get. The possibilities…

The reality?

Well, I still adore Wednesday. Love it, LOVE it.

I do vaguely clean the house and do the washing (must go and put another load in right now).  And I do re-establish a sense of calm and order to our home and family. I generally get dinner organised early, and make a nice after school snack for the kids.

I try to work on my blog, and research ways of taking it further, as well as continuing my ongoing research into dyslexia and dyscalculia for our Max.

I even bought some great exercise gear from Geometry Active Wear (it is brilliant – really holds everything in!).

BUT…I haven’t taken any photos for ages, my fabric is untouched (and I have some great orange fabric for cushions in there!), my glass has not been taken out of the box, my kiln is cold, and my canvass is still stashed behind the chair in my bedroom. Vegie patch? Non-existent.

And today Arch is sick, so no school for him.  Instead I am sharing my day off with him, and taking him to the Doctor.

But I am patient.  I know my time will come. And when that time does come, I will be ready!

 

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^^^We are hanging out for warm days again…^^^

What a boy…

Max really makes me laugh…without even meaning to!

Max hates sport at school. Every Monday morning he gets a stomach because he knows he has sport. Once a term I allow him to get out of sport by writing him a note saying he has a sore foot. Funny how he gets a sore foot once a term.

He has used his “get out of sport” pass early this term, so he knows he had to do it.  And good lord he moans about it.

Because of my slovenly house keeping, he could not find any sports socks. I couldn’t help him because I was on my way to work (hence the slovenly house keeping). When it came to doing sports today, he went up to his sports teacher and told him he couldn’t find any white socks this morning, so just wore his grey school socks.

Sports teacher told him that because he was out of uniform he had to copy down the school code of ethics (or something boring like that). Max wouldn’t have been too bothered by this as it cut into sports time. Win win.

But bless that boy, do you know what he did???

He said to his teacher ‘Sorry, I have dyslexia, so I can’t copy stuff out of a book’….
So he only had to do the headings and could go on his merry way!!

Who on earth thought Max would work the system? I laughed and laughed!