#635 KK 2017 edition

Why is it that we wait for an occasion to catch up with those we love?

…with those we can’t get a word in with because the conversation is flowing?

…with those that when ones laughs, so do the rest?

…and when one tears, the others follow suit?

…with those who have been there for far too long?

…with those who know us, inside and out?

Tonight, a tad early in November, me and my high school friends caught up for our annual KK catch up. I wish I remembered the year we started doing this, and who suggested it, and what I got that year and what I bought for someone else… but it has been happening for a WHILE.

Life is busy. We have partners. Kids. Jobs. Responsibilities. Being able to match our schedules with each others is a feat in itself, but with old friends, it shouldn’t be a job… it should be a necessity.

Because it is calming. It releases happy chemicals. You purge. You let out your frustrations. You share funny anecdotes. Like tonight, the top stories were:

Silly husbands

Gorged breasts of breastmilk

“Kids say the darndest things!”

12 year old huskies

Roses

Insane concert tickets prices, and finally –

Meat on steroids

All perfectly NORMAL things to discuss with your besties.

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It was a terrific night, and I love my PA pjs, because you can never have too much Peter Alexander.

“I have too much Peter Alexander!”

SAID NO GIRL EVER.

And a pat on the back for me, as I totally rocked the KK I got for my friend.

Score!

It made me realise a lot of life truths, and the biggest one being, the longer you are friends with someone, the harder it is to separate yourself from them.

And I don’t want to separate myself from these girls, EVER.

And we sure as hell don’t need a reason, like Christmas (though it is a bloody good one!) to make an effort to catch up.

Catching up to see each other is an event in itself.

Happy early Christmas, peeps :):):)

 

 

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#628 Coming up Roses

I have been excited, for weeks now.

My roses are BLOOMING.

Blooming I tell you!

By no means are they done, noooooo, not by a LONG shot. I take this post as a rose update, an intermission to the show that is Spring, and I present to you now, the before, and after, which really is the in-between:

Rose Bush #1

Rose Bush #2

Rose Bush #3

Do you know how happy this makes me? I SAVED them! With some terrific tips from bestie of course 馃槈 But what made me even happier than counting the first lot of roses springing forth from Rose Bush #1 one morning, and had a passing neighbour walking her dog hear me and laugh at my childish excitement, was the realisation days ago that Rose Bush #2 is sprouting roses too!

This is amazing you see, because although Rose Bush #1 had a few roses last year after we moved, and the Rose Bush #3 had less roses but with the promise of more, I didn’t even know that Rose Bush #2 was a rose bush AT ALL, as it is so different in appearance, so narrowly long and with small leaves, that I was almost close to chopping the whole thing off all together.

And now it is sprouting little tiny roses!!!!

I am made even more happy, by the fact that this Winter was my first attempt at pruning, and after being completely neglected last year, the roses have still survived. Wow. Talk about endurance. I just can’t even.

Baby girl is just as excited, as you can tell from her small photo bombs throughout the recent pics.

And just for the hell of it, here’s our Birds of Paradise which is coming up nicely too

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Another photo bomb. Blooming brilliant.

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#561 Pruning roses

Hubbie stirs me about the pruning gloves I have. I asked for them one Christmas from my sister – I then got them – and then I proceeded to not use them.

Every time he came across them, or the mention of unnecessary items came up, he would poke fun at the gloves I use soooo often.

;P

Well, today, I actually pruned.

Following from some advice my bestie gave me months ago near the onset of Winter, I scaled back the thorny rose bushes we have bordering the front of our lawn, as much as I could see fit to. I tried to remember what she had said: clip at an angle; chop away what is dead or dying; and cut it right back in the Winter months.

With 4 days of Winter left (!!!) and on a beautifully still and sunny day, I got to it. Baby girl accompanied me, filling her mini watering can repeatedly and emptying it onto the lawn in front of her, while I snip snip snipped away.

It was therapeutic. I loved it. I always had an inkling that I would enjoy gardening, and today I discovered I just wanted to keep going.

I know it’s not much, and it may not look impressive. I did my best. But that there are 3 of the bushes I scaled back. I’m posting it to hold myself accountable, hoping that they will take to my trimmings and bloom, and then I can post it for all to see.

The 1st and last bushes are roses, with the middle one being a puzzling one. We will have to wait and see what comes of number two. But the number one pic is my current pride and joy, with only one Winter rose remaining…

… and here’s hoping Spring will bring me many more.

Here’s to a new hobby, a new love, a new form of therapy…

Pruning 馃檪

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Oh, and those gardening gloves Hubbie’s always stirring me about? I couldn’t even find them today. I need to unpack some more boxes it seems… but it didn’t stop me from getting to it in the end 馃槈

#473 A Mini Me

Having your own kid is聽super cool. Apart from the loving them until the depths of the earth, reaches of the galaxy, and ends of time thing… it is also awesome, just knowing that they are a version of you.

They have your DNA. They may look like you. Their hands may be slender like yours. Their eyes the same brown, face the same heart shape, and laugh the same adorable cackle you yourself used to聽have at 3.

These things are kind of out of your control, just as much as they are out of control for your child. They can’t choose their looks or their predisposition to certain things.

But what they CAN control is themselves. And when they choose to do and be like you…

It’s pretty damn cool.

It’s all in the little things. As it always is. But she will want to wear a dress, when I wear a dress. She sees owls on my pyjamas – she wants owls on her pyjamas.

I’m brushing my teeth, and suddenly, because I didn’t hound her this time, she is reaching out and grabbing for her toothbrush, and we stand there side by side, looking at ourselves in the mirror as foam spills from our mouths, grinning.

She finds me putting on make up before going out, and she is then asking me for make up too. I give her some glittery not-obvious stuff, and she applies it to her skin with such careful precision, yet at the end I can’t even see anything there.聽I smile broadly and tell her she was beautiful to begin with, but “good job!”

I sing to Ricky Martin and Prince – she bops and hums along.

I drink coffee – she drinks babycino.

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Today, she did the cutest thing. During our daily coffee break after lunch, we were seated at the table and enjoying our little time together. She’ll have her babycino and some other sweet, usually some chocolate, while some cake or chocolate too will accompany my cappuccino. As we sat there, I brought the coffee mug to my lips, my left hand naturally going to rest on my hip, and the action made me aware of the hilarity of it, because in our high school years bestie would often be sitting at a desk with one hand on it, the other on her hip. It was funny, because she was sitting – there was no need to put a hand, or any hand on her hips. It was such a standing pose, and here, one hand always found its way there.

Baby girl must have realised my action as I did, because as she drank her babycino, her eyes skimmed over my arm on hip, and she immediately dropped one hand from her cup, and placed it on her hip.

Just like me.

It was a little gesture, but it was also the grandest one.

Just like Mum. She wanted to be just like Mum, whether Mum’s action made sense or not.

Of course, I then dropped it, telling baby girl to hold her cup with two hands (never-ending Mum worry of spilt food/drink taking over) but of course, she wasn’t going to listen to me now, was she?

The hand stayed on her hip, and I let it be. I love my girl 馃檪

#439 Memories from my past

Today I was at my parents house, pointedly going through the wardrobe of my old room, looking for… ‘something.’

In my search though, I found LOTS OF THINGS.

Some made me smile. Some made me proud. Some I took home.

These items included:

聽聽 an old diary from 2004 (it聽made me smile聽– damn my writing was perfect then!)

聽聽 a water bottle and water bottle warmer (to take home – you never know when you need one)

聽聽 old Uni essays from when I took ‘Classic Hollywood’ (that made me proud when I read bits and observed the score, and the teacher’s comments)

聽聽 a photo scrapbook my bestie put together聽and gave me the day of my wedding day (that made me smile, AND I took it home!)

聽聽 a Sex and the City make-up case that contained all 6 season DVDs, back when I bought the box set over a decade ago! (that I took home – I already have the DVDs with me, may as well complete the collection)

聽聽 also a Sex and the City board game that I have never played (that I took with me of course, due to the former!)

and then, I found the ‘something’ I had been searching for:

Angel memorabilia – in the way of Angel magazines from 2004.

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Going through memory lane was a blast, and I will do it again and go through more of my old ‘things,’ when I unpack more boxes here at home.

Yes, I am still unpacking, 8 months on.聽Not many to go, but I need to sort nonetheless.

And the reason for my Angel memorabilia search? I am very confident that tomorrow’s gratitude post will reveal ALL the answers…

;););)

#374 Reclaiming the past with Besties

Tonight, Bestie and her Hubbex came over to visit us in our new ‘hood.

It was a pretty rad night.

We have a pretty awesome history, us 4. I often wonder if the looks we get from other ‘friends’ are that of jealousy: I mean, bestie and I are of course, LONG-TIME besties, and when we get together, our Hubbies become equally as tight and crazy as us.

We were an integral part of their bridal party when they got married, which was right before I got pregnant with baby girl. It was an amazing day, and so special to be sharing it with them both, in such a close and intimate way.

But that was not the beginning, and it sure as hell聽won’t be the聽end. No. Our times together have many prior years and years on their wedding day… from after our high school years and through all of our twenties, birthdays and events, days out, dinner, catch-ups and plenty of laughter聽here, there and EVERYWHERE. I’m talking Hubbie and Hubbex jumping out of our semi-moving car after midnight singing “How Bizarre” at the top of their lungs on a Saturday night. I’m talking funny dress-ups, and stupid faces to the point that when we look back on them now, we laugh ourselves so silly that we do unintentional ab crunches from our laughter, our breath soundless and eyes all screwed up from the mad laughter that we are expressing.

I’m talking wine, I’m talking shots, and I’m talking plenty of D&Ms in-between. When I think of our long-standing history together, and think back through all of those years, I then realise how varied, vast and deep our friendship and experiences with one another are.

And generally speaking, I am proud of the maturity I’ve developed in response to the friendships and relationships in my life. Nothing remains static, stagnant. Things are ever-changing, and so too do many friendships聽take on a聽temporary ‘on hold’ spell, while life takes over, other things become more of a priority, and you move in different directions.

I love that quote, that says something like you know you聽have聽a true friend when you don’t always see each other, but when you get together it’s like no time has passed. Nothing is truer for this awesome-foursome.

Although all our lives are extremely busy, and we all have differing passions and interests and jobs that keep us entertained and out of trouble, we still make the time for each other, when we can. And tonight, while eating and drinking, listening to a whole variety of musicians and聽getting extremely excited over them,聽talking the deep philosophy of Beyonc茅’s image, pruning roses, allowing baby girl to do multiple renditions of Let it Go, turning our staircase into ‘ice’ as she stamped down on the landing, and shooing off cats, we had a smashing time.

We have matured, we are older, and we have more responsibility present in our lives… but it is still us. And US, has still got IT.

Take care of your true friends, because it takes a long time to gain an ‘old friend.’ They are precious and much sought after.

After tonight, I think our future together looks just as happy/funny/silly/meaningful/profound/bright, as ever 馃檪

 

#309 My town folk and Rain / Bestie’s surprise tree painting

A special edition. I had two interesting and special incidences today, and so I absolutely have to post both.

Lucky me. Double the gratitude:)

Part 1: The Rain.

I had just driven through the most hellish storm imaginable. I actually had thought to come to a complete stop while on the freeway going home from work. Many, many times, I found it almost impossible to see from the white sheets of rain in front of me, sweeping聽 across my car and enveloping it in a blurry fog of white. It was scary to endure, and I was relieved when after the longest drive, it started to lighten up.

And this, after the most incredible sunset last night. Ahh Melbourne.

Nearing home, the rain lessened. Finally. It had been a tense drive. I had to stop at the shops first, and got out of the car to light, wispy rain settling on the edges of my stray pieces of hair. I walked calmly into the centre.

After my post office stop and before I got to the supermarket, I heard it on the roof: the intense rattling.

Surely it wasn’t raining so hard, again, so soon after the hour of intense downpour I had just experienced on the way home?

15 minutes later with my bag of groceries in one hand, I was standing under the shelter out the front of the centre, looking in dismayed disbelief over the buckets of ran being heaved upon the car park.

My car was so close, yet so, so far.

I stood with others also holding out for the rain to ease. There were about 7 or so other shoppers, and I looked out at the car park, wondering just when and how long it would be until the rain gave out. It was heavy, and unrelenting.

The rain slowed, but only the slightest amount, not enough to brave the weather and walk through it… and yet, people did. Almost all the people who had been waiting decided to head on out to their cars. I watched, curious, as one by one they left, while I stood there, waiting, watching the Rain.

And then more came. I observed as people wandered in to the centre, soaking wet from the聽car park; and vice versa, as people exited the centre, and after a brief pause, a reshuffling of bags or searching of keys, kept on walking into the heavy rain towards their car.

The rain had lessened, ever so slightly. But I could tell what kind of deceiving rain this was, what with its big drops and聽generous weight. I wasn’t going out there, and getting soaked in 3 seconds time.聽I would keep waiting.

A man walked out of the centre with his son. They walked out and into the rain with little hesitation. A young couple walked out聽towards the car park聽as if they were taking a leisurely stroll.

Holiday-stayers, I observed. They don’t care if they get wet – they’re on holiday time.

An older man walked past me from the car park in his shorts and singlet, losing his thong in a deep puddle of water. He slowly stopped, walked back a few steps, his bare foot splashing through the puddle, before grasping the thong聽with his toe and balancing it back on. A nearby man smiled and they exchanged some words and a laugh before the man walked on, feet soaking, into the centre.

Ok, he mustn’t be driving. He can’t drive like that.

A woman walked out with her son. Flowy dress, telling him “now, don’t run!”

Run, why would you run? Ok it’s easier for her, he’s like 10, she doesn’t have to put him in the car herself.

Still I watched with how casually they made their way into the rain.

They’re all on holiday. I stood there in my wedges, pondering this fact. Skinny black jeans and a stripy singlet top. I was coming home from work. I had to drive home. I wasn’t on holiday time, not yet. These guys were not fazed at all if they got wet. They were moving about without a care in the world. I considered every justification possible.

Then, a woman walked towards the centre from the car park. As she moved forward, she too聽like the man earlier, lost her sandal in a puddle of water. She paused, her other foot hovering, as she fished it out of the water. I heard the splosh as it was brought forward and onto her foot. Her long flowy dress barely touched the deep puddles beneath her as she kept on going.

It hit me. My justifications were suddenly unworthy. These weren’t聽ALL holiday-makers. More than half were locals. And here I was, newbie in town, the girl from the ‘burbs looking on and wanting to avoid getting wet.

Screw that shit.

I waited for a slight break in traffic in front of the busy centre, and then started forward. Within seconds I could feel the warm drops sinking into all parts of my clothing, and it squeezed itself between my toes. My car was barely a minutes walk from the shopping centre shelter, and yet by the time I got to the car and plonked down in the driver’s seat, I looked down to rain splattered dark drops all over my clothes, saw the water on my arms as if someone had thrown a bucket on me, and felt my matted hair sticking in sections to my head.

And I loved it! I felt invigorated, refreshed, and alive.

Why the hell did I not do this earlier?聽We had moved to the beach for the lifestyle, which meant I had to live, LIKE the lifestyle. The locals had inspired me.

I wanted to live on the beach? Then live like I’m on the beach.

I genuinely, do love rain. And I also love my townsfolk 馃檪

 

Part 2: The Painting.

I headed over to the parcel as my MIL was putting down baby girl for a nap. I had noticed it before getting changed out of my wet clothes, but hadn’t bothered to investigate further, feeling sure it was the coasters I had ordered a long time ago. Surely, most definitely, it was them. But as I picked up the parcel and the envelopes that read “card only” indicating the late Christmas arrival, the name at the head of the label jumped out at me.

SmikG.

Hmmm. I didn’t remember putting down my author’s alias when I had ordered the coasters. In fact, I don’t remember putting it down anywhere at all. As I looked at the parcel some more,聽with聽my actual name and address underneath my alias, the writing grew so familiar to me, that by the time I had turned the parcel around to see who the sender was, I was absolutely definite on who it was from, even though I had no idea what it was.

Sure enough, I was right.

I first opened the Christmas cards, wanting to save the intriguing and exciting surprise package from bestie ’til last. As I opened it, my very slight suspicions, and my judgments based on the weight and size, were confirmed.

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My very talented best friend has recently started painting again, after a long hiatus between high school and now. I actually had NO IDEA how talented she was until she started posting her work on facebook. I had commented on a painting she had done of a similar tree, as I love trees, and all symbols and images associated to them, as mentioned here, and here. However I didn’t think she would ever send me an actual, original painting of hers.

I immediately fell in love. It was perfect. The vibrant colour was reminiscent of our friendship too, an ode to high school, Prince, Purple Rain, and so much more. It was so personal of her to give me something so beautiful and creative of hers, and I immediately felt emotional.

I called her up to express my profound thanks, and later I placed it up high in our bedroom, until we find a more permanent home for it.

…When I walked into the room hours later, the painting of the purple tree was a sight for sore eyes. I didn’t realise how much colour was lacking in our room, in our house, and I was sick of seeing beige boxes shoved into corners all over the place, only I didn’t know how much until this masterpiece entered our home.

I love it. I am really grateful for this personal present gifted to me by a very dear friend, the heartfelt meaning behind it, and the sincere generosity of bestie to even think of giving it to me in the first place.

 

Dancing in the rain amidst friendly townfolk and purple trees by bestie. Not a bad day. Not a bad day AT ALL. 馃檪