#990 Wednesday family time

Hubbie hates how I work Wednesdays. Like HATES. He hates it in bold, hates it underlined, hates it italicised, any which way you can highlight it, he does it…

He hates my working Wednesdays.

I joke he will hate them in a different way when I am not working next year and suddenly he will be hating the non-money I bring in, ha ha.

But seriously, I do get it.

He is home, and he can’t even look forward to his middle of the week day off with baby girl and I. Because there is no ‘I.’ ‘I’ am at work.

I’ve had to get away to work earlier for many weeks now, meaning the usual go-to-work late time of 1:30pm has been pulled even further back to 11am.

We couldn’t even go and do stuff in the mornings together. I got up, ate and got ready, and left.

Today however was exciting. For the first time in what feels like yonks, I was able to leave at 1:30pm. And we crammed soooo much in.

It felt like the longest and sweetest morning, in fact my time with my family was a day all in itself, that’s how much we did. What made it better was the dress I happened across (which is fabulous I might add), and also our family coffee date:

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You know what Hubbie said about it?

“I feel like I’m on holiday.”

And if that is coming out of his mouth on a Wednesday, well then I know we have made it a pretty good one.

#989 The f*&king application

I sat at my desk today, trying to write.

Here is my desk:

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Hold on. Let’s take a closer look, shall we…

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Yep. It was that kind of day.

I had held off on a to-do list item for a while now. And it wasn’t just ANY to-do list item. It was a writing one, one that involved applying for a writing course that I was hoping to put concerted effort into if approved – not only because it was a long-held passion of mine, but because I had to find something to do next year when my 11-year job came to a halt.

In applying for this course, I had to write a cover letter detailing the stage and progress of my novel, as well as include 1500 words of prose.

But, what would I write?

“Uh, so I wrote this book, about 20,000 words too long. And then I sent it out to agents with no luck, so I kept re-writing, and then I got it down (slightly), but then by that stage I had a baby.

I totally went off the ‘pitching book to agent phase’ because you know, said BABY and all, and then found another avenue to express my love of writing – in blogging.

And you know blogging is sooo much easier. No one is there correcting my work or telling me I can’t get published. I write what I like, and when I hit post, the whole world gets to see what I’ve written, whether they like it or not, think it is smart or not, and whether they agree with me or not.

But I really need to get my head out of the sand and start doing something with my novel, hence why I am here. SO. PLEASE. HELP. Accept me into this course before I start yet another blog.”

Or, something like that. Like, how could I actually put into words the last 6 years of my writing life?

I did my damn best. I put something together, I was honest, I added the words “cringe” (because I really was cringing as I put it all together) and prayed that it would be received well.

How horrible would it be to actually be rejected for a writing course? Like can you imagine… you want to pay someone a considerable amount of money to teach you stuff, and they go “no sorry, we don’t want you to pay us.”

Shudder.

To their benefit, the programme wants to make sure that the level you are writing at is best suited to their course, or else they can suggest something else for you. They don’t want to waste your money, which is actually admirable.

Still, I need help. And today I was so glad and grateful that I finally got around to writing those few pesky letters and emails I was putting off for so long, because I couldn’t actually put down in words, what I had been doing with words, all these years.

But I got there… and I hope that I actually, get there.

#988 Awesome Horse

I was a good 5-10 minutes late taking baby girl in to kindergarten today. But it ended up being the best thing.

Because I helped her make a horse.

TRUE STORY.

The kids are getting all revved up for Melbourne Cup next week, with a planned Oaks Day picnic planned where the kiddies will have their very own Race That Stops the Kinder… on their kid-made horsies.

And we walked in this morning to a massive horse-making operation, of which we unwittingly soon became a part of.

Take 1 long and hollow toilet roll-like contraption.

Take a sock. Stuff it with, well what else, some type of stuffing? They used something resembling cotton wool, only this was more wool-like. (Man I am a good writer).

Once the stuffing is firm and packed in up to the ankle section, place it over one end of the roll. Secure the looser part at the bottom with an elastic band.

Next, take some felt cut-outs for eyes, nose and ears… long stringy pieces for the mane… and tie a piece of string around its nozzle, for the reins.

And there you have yourself a kinder-made horse.

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What started off as me just helping her with a few odd bits here and there, ended up in me staying on for an extra 30 minutes, participating with all the other teachers there with gluing and cutting and stuffing, and even though I spent the rest of my afternoon chasing my tail (pardon the pun) and trying to get things done around the house, I was so happy that I had spent some of my morning with baby girl, bonding with her and making memories… and helping her make a horse.

An AWESOME horse, at that. I’ll even put $10 on ‘Sprinkle Horse’ to take out the Oaks Day race.

😉

#987 The stage she is at, 5.2

We walked on over to the table we were meant to be sitting at. We were at a family friend’s daughter’s Christening, and my eyes scanned over the empty chairs, trying to work out where the lot of us were sitting.

I counted in my head. ‘1 for sis, 1 for me, 1 for Hubbie… there’s that spare spot over there, but that’s for the old lady coming back…’

Where would baby girl sit?

I headed back to the table list at the entrance, to see that her name was not listed anywhere on our table. In fact it appeared on number 7, several tables away…

ON THE KIDS TABLE.

Dum da dum dum.

Crap. She wouldn’t sit down there, no way. She had been strongly encouraged (and I’m being diplomatic) to come inside in the first place, as she didn’t know many adults or kids there, and sure, although she was currently getting reacquainted with the kids she had played with VERY few times before, I couldn’t foresee her sitting down at a table with them, away from us, so far from her parents.

The table was tightly spaced as it was. Could she sit on my lap?

And so I wondered if it was going to be a LOOONNGGG afternoon.

But then, something happened. I told her that there was a special table, just for the kids, just as one of the girls her age called her over there. I thanked my lucky stars for her kindness, and got baby girl to sit down amongst a table full of kids that she rarely ever sees.

I put bread on her plate. Chips and calamari. I cut it up, with the 3 other Mums fussing over their own brood. I poured her some water. She watched everyone on the table. She started eating her bread. She stayed still, and me, being the overly-watchful Mum, stayed on, reluctant to leave in case walking off would result in a dramatic display of ‘MUM DON’T GO!’ –

and then it would be sit on Mum’s lap time.

But… she stayed. I reassured her of where I was sitting, just a short distance away.

I walked off. I watched as she ate. She looked over at our table and waved, even blowing kisses to us all… and although she made a few visits at times to give us hugs and kisses… she still went back to the kids table to sit and eat.

No drama. No fuss. No objections. Total maturity and complete willingness.

And in shock and surprise and happiness, I realised I was stressing over nothing.

My girl was growing up. She had this all down pat. Like she didn’t eat with a large group of kids 3 times a week at some place that was called, kindergarten? LOL. I was concerned she would whinge, go shy and retreat into herself and not come out.

But she was used to this. She was used to order when I wasn’t around. I saw that again as the ‘Magic Man’ came out to entertain the kids. She sat obediently on the floor, cross-legged beside all the others. She put her hand up to participate, calling “me me me!” and was then chosen to sit on a chair and pat a dove, stroking it so gently and happily.

You see, I don’t see this. I don’t see how she is at kinder. I don’t see the progress she is making. But in these moments, these events away when in company that isn’t our everyday kind, I become witness to her happy ways… thanking the magic man for her flower balloon… asking the other kids if she can join in with playing chasey… going back to her table to eat, and not complaining that she isn’t with us.

She spent the entire day running around with her new friends and having a ball, and came to us a couple of times, almost like a check in 😉

I am loving this stage, because not only do I get to see her develop and become, truly a big girl… but as she becomes independent, so too does my role, as her Mum.

And it is pretty cool. Getting to be there with her, for the fun stuff.

I can say happily, that I am really enjoying this stage. Sure the bed time routine is still hell at times…. but like all in Parenthood – BALANCE!

#986 Generational Bonding

I love these moments.

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Moments where I catch baby girl looking up to her with the same adoration I did as a child.

Moments where baby girl is playing with her, and they are laughing, and I feel this great surge of pride and contentment.

Moments when I know that without a doubt, if I am not there, baby girl has one of the best female figure’s to lean on.

Moments when I know baby girl will have the best role model as she grows up… in my sister.

Her aunty. ♥

I hold great satisfaction in knowing that I don’t tell baby girl what to do, how to act and even who to like… she gains that all herself, from seeing the people who are around her, from watching the actions and words of those that cross our paths, and seeing others’ interactions with us as a family.

She sees how special and amazing my sister, bro-in-law and her cousins are, without me saying a peep. Because it is there.

Being separated by generations either, doesn’t make a difference.

When I see that wonder and awe in baby girl’s eyes, I recognise it, because I used to hold it as a young girl too, looking up at my big sister.

But, I LIE.

Because, I still look at her in awe 🙂 ♥

#985 Not just any Friday

It may have been just an ordinary day today for most people. But it wasn’t for us.

And sure, Fridays are a hell of a lot more fun that all of those earlier weekdays, and yet, it still had special significance beyond being that fun ‘end-of-weekdays’, day.

It was Hubbie’s birthday, and while he still had to partake in the ordinary and work, we did our damn best to make it a little special.

Baby girl and I surprised him by showing up at his work in the morning with cake.

And at the end of the night at home, we brought up yet another cake, a tiny little mini one, lit up with a blue candle and EVERYTHING, and sang to him.

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Photo by Audrey Fretz on Unsplash

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We did our best to make him feel happy, and special… but I think the best thing he got was baby girl telling him it was his birthday, repeatedly, and jumping into his arms.

It’s worth having a birthday, just for that. 🙂

#984 Painting day means meals away

I found myself in an odd predicament today.

Odd being 4-Balkan-men-standing-outside-the-front-of-my-house-while-paint-dried type of odd.

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Well, two of them I knew. They were our painters. And then, because you’re on a professional job, you like, CALL YOUR FRIENDS OVER TO WHERE YOU ARE WORKING for a brief chat.

???

Despite the abundance of Balkan men, of which I am all too acquainted with in my life, I actually felt out of place in my house. I had returned home from doing morning jobs to find the kitchen completely covered in drop sheets, with walls and ceilings and floors either in paint, or with plastic.

It was part of the final, FINAL stage of our kitchen reno, the painting touch-ups.

FINAL-ly.

But, I could not move. Let alone have lunch.

It suddenly seemed to me that I was being presented with an opportunity. And because I would usually feel guilty about just doing it without purpose, I realised that I had a very real reason to get out of the house for lunch today.

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I ended up at a café just down the road, like literally. I sat on my own, in the sun, sometimes on my phone, listening to the sound of dogs from the grooming shop only a short distance away, and making sure those full-grown Magpies didn’t venture too close to me.

It was great.

But, I got my opportunity again, in the afternoon. They still weren’t done when baby girl came home from kinder, and I have to say, paint mess and residue is just about the worst kind. I couldn’t handle it.

So, again, out we went to escape.

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Two times today, two opportunities to get out, relax and enjoy.

And all because of the painting. Annoying, necessary and yet gratifying, all at the same time.