#479 (Un) Expected Parcel

Lately it feels like we are BILL-city. We have payments and fees and unexpected notices and amounts outstanding coming out of our every orifice. So it was nice when I received a package today that I’ve been expecting for a few days now…


I was so happy and surprised to receive a phone call from Harvey Norman late last week, telling me that the photo print competition I had entered only a month or so earlier, when I was printing 200+ photos for memory boards for my parents anniversary party, well, I had won! Well, one of the prizes on offer, which was the above-posted Bluetooth portable speaker!

What a nice and pleasant surprise! We know how cool it is since my bro-in-law has one and positions it around the house depending on where we’re sitting when we’re over, so it’s awesome to think we now have one, and we got it, for free!

Winning a competition! I feel as excited as I did when I won some comps from a kids mag when I was about 11, and got an Ariel doll in the mail…

I’m grateful for unexpected moments like these 🙂 Helps ease bill-tension and stress, too 😉

#455 A smaller Mother’s Day

I had this fleeting thought cross my mind sometime Friday, or Saturday. I was thinking of the upcoming Mother’s Day, and how we had ALL this stuff we were planning to do… go to the shops and buy outfits for ourselves for my parents’ upcoming wedding anniversary; go to visit my MIL on the other side of town; AND of course, visit my Mum also on the other side of town.

This was meant to happen after a late Saturday night, a normal sleep-in, and trying to get a never-sit-still baby girl to go along with it ALL.

Yep. It wasn’t likely to go smoothly.

Still, that was the plan. And yet, with all this impending busy-ness on the horizon, and knowing it was all for fun, a little voice inside me said ‘wouldn’t it be nice to just have a little Mother’s Day, just our family?’

Just baby girl, Hubbie and I. No running around. No 15 tasks. Just us.

Sometimes, you need to be careful what you wish for. Sometimes, little voices make a large ripple.

In a quite funny turn of events: my MIL stayed back late on Saturday night, and with her own plans for Sunday, we kind of had our unofficial catch up with her late yesterday evening; and my sister and bro-in-law were under the weather, and having had an up and down baby girl and Hubbie battling cold symptoms as well, we all decided to keep away from Mum and Dad, especially in the lead up to such a big event next week – which suddenly meant, that on Mother’s Day it was just –

Me, baby girl and Hubbie. Just US. As I had thought, so, so innocently.

And as much as I missed seeing my Mum and my sister terribly today, the quiet was quite nice:)

We had a lovely sleep in – no rushing around trying to madly get out of the house. We took some photos at home, drove to the shopping centre, then spent almost ALL DAY there. Not a brief 90 minute session.  I’m talking over 5 hours. Hubbie got some sneakers and shoes, baby girl got some toys, and I got not 1, but 2 outfit possibilities for next week.

That’s because I’m a Mum, and for us Mums, we can’t just go shopping when we like, and likewise, finding something we like in the limited time we have, is even HARDER. As it was it took 3 hours just to find those 2 outfits, so next time we have another event, at least I know I’M SET.

So, this year, a different kind of Mother’s Day. But it seems like my thought came true…. so a word of warning… be careful what you wish for…!

P.S Happy Mother’s Day to all Mums out there 🙂

#332 Dancing in the kitchen with my loves part 2

Last time, it was Hubbie, baby girl and I, dancing in the kitchen of our old home. So many memories there. So sweet, so happy. So full of wonder, joy and gratitude.

This time: dancing in our new (albeit old) kitchen in our new house, with Hubbie, baby girl, and my sis and her hubbie.

Baby girl spotted the boppy song. She turned up the volume on the radio that had been on an intermediate level as we chatted casually in the kitchen, snacking on bocconcini, crackers and pickles. We all responded in unison, our hands in the air, waving them about.

Seconds later, we were on the floor with her.

Crocodile Rock, Elton John.

“Laaaaaaaa!” we yelled to her. “La la la la la.”

“La la la la la…. la la la la la!”

Hands waving about, jumping up and down, dancing like crazy.

If only I had gotten the video recorder out to capture such a loving and happy time… it was one of those moments, where we were having too much fun to remember anything organised like that.

Good thing I have this online journal though 😉


#317 Family moments no.1

If you haven’t already noticed, I have a great deal of love, respect, and profound appreciation for my parents, and my sis and her fam. Not to mention Hubbie and Baby girl.

And today was a wondrous family day.

Again, like an earlier post, I need to list a few things for today’s gratitude. It’s just too much of a pity not to. I can’t leave anything out.

Firstly, the pool. Splashing about in my sister’s brand-spanking new pool with my family: sis, nephew, baby girl, Mum and Dad. Hubbie, bro-in-law and elder nephew looking on in amusement.

Secondly, my Dad. I had this moment tonight where I caught him. He was sitting peacefully at the table post-dinner as Hubbie and bro-in-law yapped at one end, talking music and life, and sis and I were in the kitchen cleaning up. I looked up at him, and he was smiling at sis and me. A smile of contentment, appreciation, pride. He was happy. He was thinking something just then, and I caught the beautiful moment of its manifestation. And the most beautiful thing is, I believe he was thinking it of his daughters.

I will imbed that memory into my head forever.

I smiled back, and pulled more glad wrap over the bowl.

Third, the beer-spitting incident. As we were leaving sis’ house, baby girl sat next to her best friend (the family dog) and did a little sneeze. As I walked past her, there was a second, extremely loud noise, and a tremendous splatter of liquid happened along one side of my body. Bro-in-law had taken a swig of drink from a can, and had a tickle in his throat that he couldn’t contain, resulting in a huge cough splurting out. Although I was the one spat on, I laughed just as hard as the others, while the dog looked up at us like this was perfectly normal. I laughed so hard, my belly hurt.

What a way to end the night.

Splashing, meeting loving smiling eyes, and laughing. A pretty perfect day. I sure am appreciative.

#313 She loves them as I do

She saw my youngest nephew come in the room -she looked up in surprise, and then moved forward.

She came across my oldest nephew, and sidled up to him, in a casual and shy kind of side hug, grinning in happiness.

She was almost bouncing when she ran into my brother-in-law, crashing into him with overflowing glee.

And then when she saw my sister, she went in for a big hug, the one that is so precious to receive, so natural, so unprovoked, unasked and completely from the heart… especially when it’s from a toddler.

My sister and her fam came over to our place this evening. And although I know that baby girl loves them, when I saw her unspoken words, and her strong and loving actions towards them, the recognition of that love was pronounced, and so much stronger than one could express verbally.

Actions DO speak louder than words.


#305 Christmas at my parents’

Today was a long-awaited, yet weird Christmas Day. Definitely not a normal one. But these unusual ones come every so often. Like that one year there were freak hail storms which damaged too many cars, houses and general premises alike. Or that Christmas where we caught a canary, which became Hubbie’s pet “Chrissy” for a good few years. Or that other one, where we threw water balloons at each other in the yard, and made such a mess that Dad told us all off and we got in big trouble.

Hold on, that was last year.

Anyway, we were clearly due again this year.

All my life we’ve spent Christmas Day at my parents’ house. That’s 33 Christmases in a row. That’s a lot of Christmases. They were filled with a lot of family, relos and friends when I was growing up… nowadays our group is intimate, consisting no more of my sister, bro-in-law, 2 nephews, hubbie, baby girl and I, and our parents.

And today, amidst the usual food, cake, opening of presents, D&Ms, some kind of water activity (this year a cactus sprinkler) and endless photo-taking, there was an at-home doctor’s visit, followed by a trip to the 24/7 medical centre; me scolding Hubbie for drinking more than he was eating, and subsequently throwing him ‘looks,’ and 3 hours plus driving time on the road.

I was a little shitty, and feeling under pressure many times throughout the day. But my realisation was this: I wouldn’t pick any other group of people to spend a tense and stressful day with, even if that unusual day had to be Christmas Day.

The tough moments. The ones who are there for you in the hard times, and who make your life easier then – those are the keepers.

I still loved the day, because I was with my group of number 1s.

I hope you all had a magical Christmas Day 🙂


#288 Bonding with my nephew

The phone rang. I went to look at the mobile screen, and paused. “It’s your phone,” I said to Hubbie. “My bro-in-law.” But then as I stared longer I realised the wallpaper was mine and not Hubbie’s, and quickly went to answer. Was this my sister calling from her hubbie’s phone because hers was flat or something?

“Hey Aunty SmikG.” My nephew’s voice came through.

“Hey,” I responded, temporarily forgetting the last reason he called me which was only a little while ago, and also, worried that something was wrong…

“So, you know how you told me there was a big twist in Season 3 Angel… well did you mean (the translation Wesley finds?)”


*My nephew actually said something different, but I don’t have it in me to write what he said, in fear that I will ruin it for Angel viewers, or even future Angel viewers, and even the writing of SPOILER ALERT is not enough for this huge a spoiler. So just take the above at face value.*


And then I smiled.

So then proceeded a pretty cool phone call where I talked all things Angel with my oldest, 14 year-old nephew. I felt pretty special, I mean he was calling me, and we were bonding over a pretty cool thing in itself, a love of mine I haven’t been able to properly divulge myself in for a LONG time. When I told him I would eventually get a TV in our rumpus room over here, where I would watch re-runs of Angel over and over again, he said he would join me.


And I added that we would get baby girl converted too, but I would just cover her eyes at any demon activity (i.e. 60% of the programme).

I had a really lovely convo with him, and I got off the phone immediately grateful. It felt so special to be bonding with him over a shared interest, not to mention the fact that he had started watching the show over a suggestion I made to him weeks ago now. I hoped that our shared interest would make way for more bonding sessions over many other things, and also hoped that he would come to see me not just as an Aunty, but a friend.

I was pondering all this, and having just heard from him that his Mum, my sister, was out with some friends, I had the inclination to pick up my phone again and message her ‘I was just talking to your son!’ I knew she would love it and also be madly curious. But then I stopped, as I saw the scene transpire before me. If I told her, she would come home later, and obviously would know our conversation before he got a chance to tell her. The fact that I had contacted her and told her of our convo, might tell him that there is nothing I don’t tell my sister. It might tell him that he can’t share things with me. It might tell him that it’s not worth bonding or spending time with me if I’m just going to tell-all and be another Mum-figure.

He didn’t need that. And I didn’t want that.

So I shut the scenario down in my mind and forgot about my phone. Sis will hear about it soon enough and she’ll happily call me tomorrow I’m sure 😉

But I am happy for this great bond that is developing. It makes me think of baby girl too, and the family she is in, and I am just happy and grateful all around.