#657 A Wiggly Christmas ’17

I’ve come to learn to appreciate a happy moment, because you never know when it will be your last.

Don’t take it for granted, or expect it to always be there. I have matured into this thought, more so after having a child of my own. Moments are fleeting, both good and bad, and when something is good, take stock and hold on and say “thank you.”

Whether it is a milestone, a meeting, a happy coincidence, an event, or a concert… I try to be mindful, aware, and grateful.

And, I’ve been thankful the last couple of years for mine and my sister’s little Wiggly tradition with our kids…

Although the last time we caught up in ol’ Franga-town, it was early in the year and a more intimate ‘do,’ this was the second time that we had gone together to see the Wiggles do their traditional Christmas BIG show, and despite seeing them already so many times before, if it were at all possible, our kids were more excited, with more dancing, more singing, and more smiles than ever before.

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I always wonder ‘when will it grow old?’ ‘when will they move onto other things?’

‘When will we grow tired of the same old ‘Hot Potatoes?”

The answer is below. Because we found it the most amazing of coincidences (which I don’t believe in!) that we both arrived in the arena, through the same door, at the exact same time with only a few people in between us, and when we got back to our cars parked in a multi-level thousand car capacity car park, we found our vehicles positioned directly opposite from each other.

If you know the capacity of these end-of-year Wiggles shows, you will understand the insane slim chances of that happening, TWICE.

And so, I think our kids have as much chance of getting sick of the Wondrous Wagging Wiggles anytime soon, as we have of losing our Sixth Sisterly Senses.

So sis, get comfy with your mashed bananas and cold spaghetti. 😉

Toot toot, chugga chugga.

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#494 Her manners

Baby girl continues to astound me. Sure, through all these years of her growing up, I’ve encouraged her to say “Ta” to whoever deserved it – the kind lady at the grocers offering her a free biscuit just ‘because’; her grandparents when they slip in a note for any future babycinos; and anytime food or drink is brought to her, she knows to smile and give thanks.

Yet it still comes as a surprise to me that she is now saying “Thanks!” so much, so often. Well, it sounds like “catch!” but same same. I’ve been telling her to give appreciation for the last few years, whereas now she is doing it of her own accord, which I had absolutely no expectation of at her age – and yet I am rapt.

Tonight for example. Today while in the post office, I came upon the most fantastic surprise for her. One of her many, many loves at the mo, is Paw Patrol, and so when I saw a nightlight in the shape of one of the characters, Skye (I mean, baby girl was even wearing her Skye hoodie to kinder while I was eagerly rubbing my hands in anticipation of this purchase) I knew I HAD TO buy it.

Hubbie and I told her there was a surprise, but she wouldn’t get it ’til after dinner. You never give a child anything before they eat their vegies. NEVER EVER EVER.

She did well though, and we sat her down and gave her the paper bag to peek into. She fished out the nightlight pup, her grin still painted on her face, and took in all of its pink, girly, doggy glory.

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SHE. WAS. RAPT. I don’t know who was more excited, she from her surprise present, or us from anticipating, and receiving, the sheer joy that was so apparent. She then hugged the light, and said

“Catch Mama, catch Tato!”

Oh My God. Where does she get these things? Does she have to be so freaking adorable so we buy her MORE presents? Darn it kiddo, you get away with tooooo much.

And then moments later, because she just couldn’t contain herself, again

“Catch Mama, catch Tato!”

LOL. Oh man. I just love this girl. And truly, really, completely, I do not lie when I say watching your child grow and develop, is about the greatest thing in the world…

 

#399 Colleague appreciation no.2

So, it’s getting later in the gratitude game now, where I’m tending to double up on gratitude moments.

Not really double-up, but the theme is similar, hence all my “no.2” posts at the moment.

Take coffee for example (of course I would use coffee as an example). A narrow-minded person may be grateful for it, once. But an open-ended and wide-ranging one, would take cause to notice it’s deep aroma, the texture, the way it perks you up, it’s up-lifting qualities, of course it’s taste, and then there’s all the places you can enjoy this fine beverage in a range of wonderful locations… and so, so much more.

You get my drift.

I actually have been grateful to coffee in a number of ways too. And I will continue to be.

As I will find reasons to be grateful, for many, many other things multiple times over.

Like, a nice compliment. Appreciation. Who doesn’t need a bit of kindness directed their way???

So today I had my usual coffee walk with my work colleagues. I haven’t seen them properly in a while, which means that although I, and they, have all been working, with all of our shift work, and then my part-time work on top of that, I’ve just been catching the end of them as they conclude their day’s work.

I was both surprised and touched to hear, amidst our light-hearted banter, that they had missed me, and preferred when I worked earlier in the day, as opposed to late in the afternoon.

“But I don’t make that much of a difference!” I exclaimed, referring to my part-time work.

“But you do!”

Awww. I’ve known them for quite a few years now, and it’s interesting how well you begin to know each other’s lives and everything in it. I’m pretty lucky to work within a great team, and to hear from some of my longest and best colleagues that I’m missed when away…

Well, that just makes me blush. 🙂

#358 Kinder days no.1

Today was the second session of kinder where I left baby girl and… ventured off by myself for a couple of hours.

They have been staggered starts to help her settle into the whole kindergarten ‘flow,’ (not that my cheeky monkey needs to go into it slowly, as she charges without hesitation into the playground, touching everything within reach) and next week will be the big one, where she will be there for 5 hours. This will be the norm, week in, week out.

5 hours.

5 HOURS

5 HOURS!

What does one do with oneself after 3 and a half years of raising a princess, where the only time you have to yourself is when you are working, and when you are sleeping (and let’s face it sleep provides no guarantee EVER of peace, especially with kids).

What do I do with myself?! For 5 freaking hours???

Why… EVERYTHING. Starting with hitting the Main street.

I have been putting off buying presents for some people in my life, and I am seriously late in buying these, because baby girl makes it so interesting for me when I try to buy anything that isn’t a toy, or a kinder surprise. So the first thing I did after dropping her off, was go mad on the shops.

I bought all 4 presents that I was planning to. 3 shops for that. Success. Then I decided to do some ‘me’ shopping.

I mean, really, I still had to buy one book present, so technically it wasn’t like I was actively searching for a book for myself… but when a book practically jumps out at you, you have to buy it, right?!

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I purchased the above book for myself, and the Farrell’s bookstore was running a freebie where you could pick up a book containing sample chapters of upcoming releases…

Free book you say? I can’t believe the sales assistant even asked “do you want one?”

So, I’m pretty happy. I ticked off some to-dos, indulged in some ‘me’ time and browsed some beautiful shops, and the photo above makes me so happy because it is representative of all that is yet to come.

Satisfaction. Joy. Simple pleasures.

Appreciation. Yay for this time in my life :):):)

 

 

 

#330 Blended Beard, & Boats

Have you ever had that moment, where you feel you are truly being appreciated? Where you are genuinely welcomed and made to feel special? Where someone is nice to you and you think ‘yes, this is what humans are meant to do for one another?’

Also, are you a caffeine addict?

And imagine now coffee lover… if a café gave you the above warm welcome when you walked through its doors?

???

My mind is still being blown from my morning coffee walk at work today. I walked into Blended Beard, listed as being my 2nd, almost equal 1st, café to coffee at in Docklands, which you can read about in my review of Docklands cafes here.

Anyway, this place has always been amazing. I’ve always preferred Story’s coffee down at the concourse, ever so slightly to theirs, but in the service department, the Bearded guys win, HANDS DOWN. They are always so friendly, lovely, warm and welcoming, and today’s experience just needed a mention in this blog, that’s how much it pleasantly surprised me.

So we enter, work mate and I. Greetings from the coffee making counter, lovely hellos, “Welcome guys,” and all that jazz. Like we’ve been away on holiday, and they’ve missed us majorly (well, we kind of have).

I then go up to order, and the girl behind the counter is the regular who takes the coffee orders most times I’m there. I say with a smile

“Hi, can I get a large cap with 1 sugar?”

And she’s looking at me with the slightest hint of a smile, but there is something more there, something I can’t quite detect yet. Slight squinting of the eyes, firm look of concentration, she takes a coffee cup and starts to write on it with no hesitation from the moment I’ve spoken.

“SmikG.” It’s more a statement than a question.

I nod and go to hand over my coffee card so she can stamp it, suddenly aware that she hasn’t yet seen the name on the coffee card… so how did she remember my name, when I haven’t been there in weeks, and I might frequent the cafe only once a week?

I walk away in slight shock and awe, and wait ’til my colleague orders his cap before I converse excitedly.

“How did she know my name?”

“Maybe she saw your pass.”

I look down. My name tag is swaying above my hips. She couldn’t have seen it, not from the large cash register that had been in between us and obstructing our bottom-half view from one another. No way.

“How did she do that?” I go on. “She must be one of those mind game people, you know they read you psychologically, maybe she’s like that with names.”

We soon get our coffees and leave to more lovely well wishes and sweet goodbyes. I am actually really appreciative that not only are they so amazing and friendly, their coffee is great, but also the coffee order gal tries her damn hardest to remember everyone’s name, and she somehow remembered mine!

I am still in awe. This from a girl who is shocking with names. Really. She is my hero.

Then we slowed the pace because it was a gloriously sunny morning, and watched some rowers and boats along the water, wishing we too were boarding the grand old thing with the pensioners. Oh well, one day.

To Blended Beard, and Boats. And name remember-ers. I salute you.

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#280 Setting up the Tree – 3 year old Baby Girl edition

Tonight, we put up the Christmas tree base, on its own. I’m doing it in stages, you see.

Or should I say, we’re doing it in stages.

Like everyone at this time of year, there is just so much to do. Everyone is in a mad rush, trying to get everything possible accomplished by year’s end. Yes, it is a generally busy period, what with close of business, Christmas parties and festivities and fun abounding, and then of course, sweet sweet Summer makes everyone that much more crazy for going out, getting insane and making the most of life.

However, if you break down your end of year jobs, you’ll find that they may just be achievable, despite mad insanity. Yes you’ll need to plan, yes you’ll need to stay focused, and yes you’ll need to just keep going no matter what. But, broken up into stages, it is very achievable to go into Christmas Day a very happy Larry/Sally.

Which is why I do my Christmas decorating in stages.

Also, I have a 3 year old daughter. That is explanation in itself I think.

If I were to attempt to put up the tree base, decorate the tree with lights, and baubles, and then go on to decorate the house with various Christmas paraphernalia, I would lose my marbles, or in this case, quite literally my baubles. Also, that huge and long task, accompanied by baby girl, would seem so hard that I would put it off for too long, even though I love Christmas and want to decorate the house as soon as is allowable/acceptable.

Breaking up the festive job is best enjoyed in stages. Like sipping on a hot coffee. It needs to be savoured – not thrown back to scald your throat in one huge lug.

Hubbie had set the heavy tree box in our lounge area for me. I positioned it against where the tree would go, before starting to open it. Baby girl gasped in recognition at the photo on the box, and came over to help me.

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She handed me branch by branch, until the tree was sitting tall in our living area. She clapped and yelled “YAY!” before leaning in to give the Christmas tree a hug, almost knocking it over in the process.

She takes after her Mum. She too LOVES Christmas.

And then if that weren’t enough, she leant in to kiss it.

Awww. Shucks.

Christmas alone is a wondrous thing, a beautiful experience, a memorable yearly event to be cherished with your loved ones. But when you have a child, you can start to compare your Christmas’ against how much your child has grown, and evolved, and developed, and learnt, year by year… and I watched with satisfaction as this girl of mine, took clear delight in a big green tree taking residence in our home, for a semi-permanent period anyway.

I love this time of year. Christmas makes you take heed of what you have, how far you’ve come, and what you are grateful for in your life… and for this appreciative gal writing this blog, it kind of makes sense I love it so much, doesn’t it?

 

#232 This moment is perfect – no. 1

About how I found a truly beautiful moment to feel utterly grateful, taking the time to be thankful for the present, and not basing my happiness on “when this happens I’ll…”

Despite the fact I was snowed under when it happened. When appreciation dawns on you, take heed.

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Insane crazy day. I was packing like I never packed before. My sister and Mum even joined in. Then they left, and I had to take baby girl to an appointment. Because that’s what you do the day before you move your life across town.

I jumped in the car. I was tired. But I was tense. Stressed. In a state of desperation and rush, my thoughts whirring at 200 kilometres an hour. Do this, do that, don’t forget that, I need to still do that, and on and on and on and on and ON. Baby girl was also tired, and I was willing her to make it through the appointment with very little hiccups.

Then. Something occurred to me. Despite everything that was going on, despite the crazy, the madness and the never-stop-moving that seems to always happen with us, I realised it was a perfect moment.

I looked back at baby girl in the car. We were happy. We were healthy. I had this beautiful baby girl in the car with me, and she was amazing. My baby girl. We were about to embark on a life-changing journey, and it was the fulfilment of a long-held dream that was COMING true. Baby girl was at a precious age, and would not be so dream-like and naïve for much longer.

This moment was beautiful.

My eyes actually welled up with tears at the realisation, and I took the moment to pause, and reflect. I was really grateful for that special ‘dawning’ moment, before the chaos set in again.

Be aware, and look for the good in everything. It is here.