#557 What she said

Sleep-coma was threatening to win me over at any moment.

I was so tired as I struggled to fight the fog, reading baby girl a book in the dark of her room, against her dim Skye lamp.

But soon it was done. She wanted some face tapping, which I promptly followed with, and then she was going to do it on me, so I closed my eyes and settled in for some random and non-parallel taps from her gentle fingers all over my face.

She ended by kissing me on the forehead, just as I always do for her.

I quickly tucked her in, getting comfortable sitting on the toy box beside her as I did every night, waiting for her to fall asleep. Then –

*lip-smacking sounds!*

She wanted another kiss. I leaned in quickly – do not fight the requests, it only delays everything that much more – and we gave each other kisses. To which she then said,

“Mama best friend.”

Awww.

“You’re my best friend too,” I whispered to her giving her another kiss.

“Yeah best friend, in whole world!”

Awww. I mean, that there. I’m done.

Tick tick tick. I’ll remember that moment, these memories, and this age, forever and ever and ever.

♥♥♥

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#550 Chaddy shopping day no.3

Today Hubbie and I had the rare luxury of heading to the shops together, without baby girl! I may sound horribly evil at the amusement of leaving her at kinder while we went to do so, but when you are a parent and have lived through the hardships of completing any shopping at all, let alone personal shopping when child/baby is in tow, well then you will understand my delight.

He bought a linen white shirt for beach days.

I bought a couple of tops.

And then I also bought these:

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I was really inspired when I picked up the Rebel Girls book. My first thought was to buy it later on, when baby girl was like 5 or 6 and could actually understand the stories more when I read them to her at bedtime, but then Hubbie was like “buy it now and just keep it!” and of course that was all the ammo I didn’t need to change my mind.

I even read a couple of entries on some of the influential and inspirational women when I got home, those of Jane Austen and the Williams sisters, and they blew ME away. I think this bedtime storybook is suitable for women of ALL AGES, not just young girls (and that’s my thoughts before I’ve even reviewed it!)

And the other book? Well it was timely that a book about things going wrong and not giving a flying f&^k when they do so, would pass before my eyes the day after I posted about birth-days not going to plan. I’m all very ‘think positive’ and ‘look at the brighter side of life,’ yet found freedom and relief in the premise of a book that was telling me to JUST NOT CARE.

I’ll let you know how I go. I’m grateful for it all, nonetheless.

 

#480 Her affectionate nature no.2

“Ugh,” I groaned. I was over it. Baby girl was going for yet another book.

Any other night and I would have just bared it. Tonight however, I was feeling ‘it’ again. Under the weather. Tired. Weak. Sore throat. The last few weeks this is how I’ve been… how we’ve all been. The cold comes, the cold goes.

Great, I thought. This Winter cold is ‘up’ again.

She came back to her bed with a second book, while I closed my eyes and willed myself to remain calm.

The sooner I read it, the sooner it’ll be over, and then I’ll be able to go to sleep.

I started reading an old faithful: In The Night Garden.

“The night is black and the stars are bright,

and the sea is dark and deep,

and someone I know is safe and snug

and drifting off to sleep…”

Baby girl was grabbing at my free hand, and appeared to be doing something to it… tickling it? Was she drawing circles in it the way I used to do to her hand, during this part of the story?

It occurred to me as she straightened my fingers. “Do you want to hold hands?” I closed mine around hers.

“Yeah.”

Awww. Immediately, all the frustration I’d been feeling melted away. She wanted to hold hands and have me read to her? This girl is the cheekiest and smartest and most challenging of monkeys at times, but when she pulls things like this, my heart can barely cope with the onslaught of love. Simultaneous guilt for wanting to go and sleep, versus enormous gratitude for this moment emerged.

Always more gratitude though, because glass half-full gal and all…

I squeezed her hand into mine and kept reading.

“Round and round a little boat,

No bigger than your hand.

Out in the ocean,

Far away from land…”

 

#435 New library

I think, when we collectively call ourselves avid readers and writers, surely then we must be a member of more than a few reading institutions?

The first library membership I got was when I was about 10, and that was a school incentive since they had built a local library in our suburb, up in the North.

I loved it, and thrived on my library membership, for ages. I would bring home the maximum amount (back then 10 books only) of Goosebumps, The Babysitters Club, and then Sweet Valley High series books, up until my mid-teens. This phase lasted long, and had me happily perusing through the library shelves for years on end, maybe until I was 15 or so.

Then boys kind of became more prominent. I would still visit, but much more infrequently, and later in Uni days, a lot of material from my essays would come from those aisles. I would walk up and down, and reminisce about the good old days, where I could read 10 books well within a few weeks time, and come back to borrow more earlier than I needed to, thirsty for more.

Fast forward many, many years, and a brand-spanking new library opened near my work. It is a work of art, and it is my belief even a non-reader would find interest, solace, and a renewed sense of appreciation for the written word, in here.

Of course, I became a member. I borrowed a few books, and then when I realised that reading, taking notes, and then reviewing the book within a few weeks span became a bit too much to take on, I kind of stopped borrowing from there.

It’s temporary, and it’s only because I’m awaiting the day I can devote much more time to fiction books.

However, today baby girl and I ventured to our new, local library. The first time we went there was right after we moved, and so I didn’t have the proper I.D. with my new home address to subscribe. Today however, different story.

At the Mornington library, I am told I can borrow unlimited books at any one time. Woah. Up to 10 DVDs, and there’s a bunch of other benefits of becoming a member too. Baby girl enjoyed the kids nook, sat in a reading booth, and I just happened across (this stuff seriously jumps out in front of me) a couple of books that I just HAD to borrow.

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You can totally tell which are for me, and which are for baby girl, right? I mean, I’ve been hanging to read Dr Seuss’ take on fish for yonks now.

😉

Seriously though. Am I the only writer that has tonnes to read and write, a whole book shelf at home just crying out to me “read me! read me!” and yet I still go out and borrow/buy MORE books?

I think the novelty of the library, is the fact that if you do not read a book in your borrowed time span, not to fear – just re-borrow, or read it at a later stage. There is no commitments, and I think in my case, for now, with so much fiction for me at home just STARING at me whenever I go past my shelves, I can happily borrow reference books and the like, and then pick what content will serve me best from within its pages.

And while there, I registered baby girl for the ‘1000 books before school’ challenge, where she will aim to read up to 1000 books, and track her progress on a chart with stickers, with little incentives as she hits big milestones along the way. This number can include any books read at home or school or her grandparents house, and even the re-reading of favourite books. They can all be counted, starting from today. If you’re interested in doing so for your littlies, I understand many libraries are partaking in the challenge.

The end of the challenge is either the commencement of school, or when she hits 1000.

Do you seriously think I will let baby girl, the daughter of a writer, not get to 1000 books within these two years?

To answer your question… she already has 4 stickers today.

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God Bless the Library.

#404 Shopping with my girl no.2

Today’s successful shopping buys at Bayside were:

  • a pair of charcoal Mossimo trakkies
  • a pair of hot pink Milky trakkies
  • thick Winter stockings
  • a 3 packet of singlets

and a collectible Disney princess in an egg that I just couldn’t live without when I saw it at the counter.

Wait. No, the above was baby girl. ALL of the above was for baby girl.

Did I buy anything for myself? Was the shopping day successful in anyway, for me???

Well I did happen across a display of Harry Potter books, and bought myself The Philosopher’s Stone… I’ve always been into the story, and have watched the first few movies, stopping after I didn’t really have anyone in my life to get excited about them with.

Also, I love the J.K. Rowling story and am as much fascinated with her rags to riches tale as I am the actual book, so thought it was time I gave it a whirl.

After some lunch of sushi rolls and rice, we grabbed some groceries, including a takeaway kinder surprise that I just HAD TO HAVE – wait, no, that was baby girl again – and also a packet of choc-chip cookies that I this time, couldn’t walk past.

We then headed towards Lincraft where we bought some shimmery blue organza for a cape to match my dress…

Nope, again. That was for baby girl, so she can fling it off her, Elsa-style, during her billion future renditions of “Let It Go.”

We ended out trip by heading out into the still Autumn sun with all our buys, and I was honestly, as happy and chuffed as baby girl was. Seriously 🙂

 

#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 :):):)

 

 

 

#302 Bedtime laughter

Once again, baby girl steals the show in the final hours of the night.

That little lioness of mine 😉

So, her bedtime routine now includes 1 book, not 4, or 5, as I’ve previously mentioned. It doesn’t interest her as much; or, it’s yet another phase. Either or, I’m not complaining. I know we will share many more reading moments together.

Also, she now has a little plastic battery-operated night-lamp, with ballerinas present on the shade. This comforts her in falling asleep, and keeps her soothed so if she were to wake in the middle of the night, she’d fall asleep again, rather than go in search of me at 4am.

But because the lamp is on for about 8-9 hours each night, I feel like the light has slightly faded. I’m actually quite impressed that I haven’t had to change the batteries yet. It’s been going on 2 weeks since we bought it I’m sure.

When we first got it, I was able to place it on baby girl’s toy chest beside me and read her books to her from the dim light that shone through. I know it must be fading though, because I can barely see the words on the pages, and instead I now use the little lamp as a kind of torch, waving it over the page to read the words as I go.

(Why not just put the light on, you ask? You clearly do not have a toddler. Toddlers don’t just have a 2nd wind before bedtime – their wind resembles something like a tornado. Getting a toddler to calm down for bedtime is a daily challenge, so having a bright light on during reading time when they are meant to be ‘winding down,’ is a big NO NO).

So I’m in bed with her, waving this lamp over the page. I’m wondering what time I am eventually gonna get out of there, while reading about the adventures of the Ninky Nonk and the Pinky Ponk  – (again, if you are not a parent and you didn’t know what I was talking about you would be forgiven for assuming I’m on crack) –

and then Iggle Piggle is there too and he’s about to go see where Makka Pakka and Upsy Daisy are in the Night Garden (I know, I know)…

when the lamp slips from my hand and hits the page.

“Whoops!” I pick it up swiftly.

But baby girl has been set off like a firecracker.

She laughs this unyielding, adorable cackle, unable to contain her amusement. In that moment I could breathe loudly and she would find it hilarious. But even I smile a bit and laugh along, before pushing forward and telling her to turn the page.

But as I keep reading, a laugh escapes me, just too as it escapes her. We’re giggling and laughing, unable to forget the little, silly, ‘whoops’ and lamp-hitting-page activity that just transpired between us.

And suddenly, it’s like when you’re with friends. You know when someone does or says something, you both laugh, and then when you try to move on you can’t, because you keep remembering what made you laugh? And both your laughter keeps the other one laughing, and on and on it goes.

We totally were like that. Friends. Mum and Daughter. I don’t even know why it was so funny. It was a ‘you just had to be there’ moment. But it was gold. Her laugh was infectious, and as always, even though I was winding her down, I couldn’t help myself: I had to hear her laughter again.

2 pages later, and “whoops!” lamp ‘accidentally’ hits the page again. Sorry Upsy Daisy.

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We laughed out loud, cackled, and truly, it was beautiful. Simply beautiful.

Such a little moment, but such a lot of love.

It’s always the little moments. Because the little moments, fill your heart with a lot of love.