#852 Sweet reminiscings, and bittersweet goodbyes

Sugar prevailed today.

Some was of a transient quality, the kind you get when you visit a place you used to frequent often, a long long time ago.

That is a rather poetic way of saying that I caught up with my parents in a shopping centre on the other side of town. I used to go there fairly regularly, and I swear I don’t know what it is, but I miss the shopping centres on my old side of town so much. The three I used to alternate between visiting had a variety of shops, gave me a different experience at each one, and also, all three were relatively close compared to my now 40 minute drive to either Southland or Chadstone.

Of course, once there, coffee was in order.

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Like I said. Reminiscently sweet.

🙂

And then I had one of my last late, late work shifts tonight, because well, someone will be taking over the reigns soon, THANK GOD. No more driving home post 1am. But this night held something else over good riddance to crappy late shifts… a dear work colleague who I have worked with for the past 8 years, well tonight was her last shift… before starting the most important job of her life – becoming a Mum.

To see her off properly, again, sugar.

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There was cake galore, some brought in by her, some brought in by me. I decided to eat it all at once, but then I didn’t know if the ill feeling was from overconsumption, or the realisation I wouldn’t be seeing her anymore at work past tonight.

😦

Sweets that help us remember, and sweets that help us to pay tribute. Their unifying theme is the moment of gratitude we hold when we look back in appreciation and understanding… that things change, people move on, and people move away… but we can still remember these things fondly and hold them dear to our hearts…

Keeping the memories sweet in our hearts. ♥

 

#847 Adaptable Sis

There are many things I love about my sister. One of them being, that she is quick on her feet. She is fast in thinking up a new plan in light of things going wrong.

She doesn’t react – she responds. There is a difference. Responding is a positive action, on top of her already can-do attitude and the general optimism that she exudes. She doesn’t freak out when things don’t go to plan – she keeps a level head, thinks quickly and calmly, and with effortless action – BOOM! Problem solved.

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This was made apparent tonight. The fact that she didn’t have a ‘9’ candle for her birthday didn’t stop her. The wheels kept turning in her head, yet her happiness remained, and within some short time this makeshift ‘9’ was sitting on top of the birthday cheesecake.

Just like that. People thought it was great. People thought it was super-inventive. People were impressed.

Just think about that for a second. If we just trusted in ourselves a bit more, allowed ourselves to take risks, and also, to stuff up… if we still charged on ahead, knowing things hadn’t gone to plan…

We wouldn’t be ridiculed! No. We would be congratulated. We would be appraised for our adaptability. We would realise that the only important rules were

To keep on going

To turn up, and

To not be swayed by things that affect us along the way.

There is a lot of things I have learnt from my sister during the years, since she was my first role model, and continues to be throughout the years…

She is a perfect example of what a human being should be. Compassionate. Giving. Supportive. Loving. Selfless. And a hell of a lot of FUN.

It is easy to say that you want to be like that, but it is another thing entirely to live it, and breathe it. She is THIS. She continues to inspire me with her ways, but it wasn’t until tonight’s little incident, that I appreciated a completely different part of her.

Respond. Don’t react.

Happy Birthday Sis. Don’t worry – no one will let you forget the candles for next years one 😉

#825 A Royal Party

We had a few things to celebrate tonight.

It was my Dad’s birthday this week.

So too was it my parents wedding anniversary.

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And then there was the little matter of… crowns.

My family and I gathered excitedly around the TV in my parents’ lounge room as the royal proceedings commenced after dinner.

Or should I say, I gathered excitedly. I wasn’t the only one surprised by my sudden outburst at seeing Megan’s ex-workmates from Suits donning their finest scrubs as they rocked up to the wedding of the future Duchess of Sussex.

My family, more so Hubbie, was quite baffled at my sudden revert back to my 16 year-old self as I yelled excitedly “it’s Harvey! Harvey’s here! And Mike! And that one who was in Angel too!”

You know how when you watch a show for a while and grow to love its characters, you start to feel like you know them? Even more, they are like your friends?

Well Rachel Megan and her Suits pals were my buddies… and then she met Prince Harry.

Awww. ♥♥♥

Needless to say I have loved this story and their budding romance EVER SINCE.

And yet still, when I went teenage hormonal tonight like I was at a rock concert, I even surprised myself.

‘Huh. So I am excited then aren’t I?!’

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Let’s face it, when are we going to see another Royal wedding like this? Maybe in 20 years time, when William and Kate’s kids walk down the aisle… so put that into perspective. These things don’t come around often, and it’s pretty cool that we were able to watch it tonight.

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Ahh, princesses. Princes. Weddings. Dashing lads and beautiful brides. And watching someone you admire from afar, get married… it was almost as good as a Suits eps.

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And our family affair of celebrations was ramped up a notch with some opportune headwear…

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And cake too 😉

 

 

#812 Next gen yard play

It was a sweet moment tonight as I watched a handful of kids run around a backyard in the fading light of the evening.

Our should I say, it was a sweet couple of hours.

I was at a relative’s house… well, me plus the rest of the fam-bam. In my cousins large and expansive yard, baby girl and her cousins, all ranging from ages 4 – 10… started to play.

It has always been a bit harder for them all to play together, just because of the slight age gap, and various stages they have all been at. But tonight, that gap didn’t appear so big, as they all ran around playing chasy, throwing glow sticks into the night air, participating in hide and seek, and just all around having a great ol’ time.

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The blur of the lights and movement represents just how fast and go-go-go it was out there.

It was made more sweet, because they were our kids. Me, and my cousins.’ We had our own set of memories and times spent having fun together, and now our kids were all coming to an age where they could more easily interact with one another, giving each other memories that I just know they will hold dear forever… I know that, because I hold mine dearly to my chest too.

And inside I then went, to talk to my own family and cousins about our own reminiscing times, and both memories I had been involved in, and times I had not been around for, were equally fascinating to me, because they all shared the common needle and thread work that is, our extended family.

We were all a part of it, through time, through generations, through blood.

Not only were the kids outside having a ball amongst themselves, but it allowed us to do the most important and relaxing thing of all –

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Cake, and coffee. Vanilla slice YES PLEASE.

 

#777 Easter belly-aches

^^^

Now that’s a number.

Today was Easter, and along with the obvious happiness inherent in the day, of chocolates and goodies; Easter egg hunts and fresh hot cross buns; and no more late night work shifts (for now) and looking forward to days off to spend in leisure together, there was joy in the little moments.

Little moments can make a HUGE difference. I was happy about the day having had arrived, but also, other things were weighing me down. Baby girl was in a funny mood, for I don’t know why…

I had a constant feeling of anxiety and stress, feeling fully wound up from our long drive over to the other side of town…

and then of course, daylight savings. Yes, we had had an extra hour of sleep, but in doing so our breakfast was late, lunch didn’t happen, and then we ate between lunch and dinner for what was linner or dunch, YOU CHOOSE, which had my stomach feeling all topsy-turvy like.

But then at some point during the evening, something happened.

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We were all sitting around the table, my whole family, and my sister made the funny exclamation “all they ever want me for is to make them food!” She was talking about ALL her boys of course, and then as we laughed and laughed, she turned to my Mum, and they shared a high-five, my Mum roaring with laughter. Of course she would get it.

I then came in with my own high-five to my sister, which made the boys go into defence mode as my bro-in-law, nephew and Hubbie all huddled together at the end of the table as an ‘us versus them’ move, and then I provided the clincher, when I whispered to baby girl “high-five your aunty.”

And she leaned over the table, hand outstretched. “SLAP!”

A few more oohs and aahs from the guys, more riotous laughing and belly-aching jiggling, and suddenly, all my woes and worries faded away, and everything in me, was lighter.

Laughing out loud in earnest with your most loved ones, can have a tremendous effect on your body and soul.

I guess what I’m trying to say, is that even the simplest and most unassuming times spent with your family, can wipe away the strongest unhappiness’ in your heart.

And yet my family, is NOT simple or unassuming. They are special and strong, supportive and fierce. Wild laughs, wild stories, wild memories.

I love the moments we spend as a family like this, because they are priceless. They mean more than any blog post can convey. But still, I try 🙂

And because I liked it, here’s a view of the evening Easter sky from my parents backyard this evening:

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Hope you all had a very Happy Easter, and all in all, just a magical and hop-tastic day 🙂

#737 35 minutes from company, makes for excited Hosts

At our closest, we have family that lives 35 minutes away. Most of the family are a cruise-control freeway length of 40-45 minutes, while the rest of them, well…

TAKE YOUR PICK.

We can be driving for hours to see someone. An hour? Yep. 90 minutes? For sure. 2 hours?

Yep even that far.

Our own parents, who used to live 7 and 15 minutes away from us, are now a day-trip length of 80 minutes.

We aren’t really catching up with anyone on this ‘side’ of town yet. In this town. We haven’t been here long enough to form those kinds of bonds, just yet.

I mean, we knew what we were in for. It wasn’t as if we didn’t know where everyone lived, or we didn’t know that we knew absolutely no one in the town we were moving to…

Still, it can get a little lonely. We wouldn’t change our location or house for the world, we genuinely really truly love it. However when we got home from our little Barwon Heads getaway on the weekend, after being just the trio of us for days already, we so desperately were seeking company, and needed to be with someone other than ourselves…

But locally, there was none to be found at our immediate disposal.

That’s why we are so happy when friends and family pop by for a visit. We had such friends pop over tonight, and we went to all efforts to make it a fabulous night.

We genuinely enjoy having people over and hosting, and being the fact that we are now further from many of them, we make the concerted effort when they do arrive on our doorstep.

Whether you have friends popping by unexpectedly, driving a long distance to see you, or you need to organise the meet up weeks in advance…

Having someone want to come and visit you, is happiness in itself, without all the food, the drink…

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Even the CAKE.

Feeling grateful for those in our life who make time for us, and more so the wonderful friends who came through our door tonight.

 

 

 

#661 A very cookie birthday

I love celebrating the birthdays and special occasions of my family. Even more so, when it is done so naughtily, mid-week.

Throw in a blue cookie monster cake, and I’M SET.

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It was my younger nephews birthday today. The handsome fella got the cake he wanted, which the little group of us enjoyed immensely, baby girl especially so.

It was a fabulous night since it was just a small group of us, but often the smallest gatherings are the best. Casual chit-chat, relaxed vibes, all with a mild Summer evening as our backdrop and a lot of love to spread around…

And like I said, mid-week. On a Wednesday night. I feel like I am cheating by having so much fun and seeing my family like this, in the middle of the working week.

But maybe we should do this more and not even wait for the weekend to arrive…

Throw parties. See the people we love.

EAT COOKIE MONSTER CAKE.

Life is short, so why the hell should we not enjoy it for all its worth?

Oh, and by the way… it was good.

“C is for cookie, that’s good enough for me…”