Baby girl is on a loom band bracelet making FRENZY.
When I took those photos tonight she had made 27.
Then she went and made more!
She is finding such joy in it. I can see how happy it makes her, and I love how the thrill of making bracelets of different colour and length is keeping her busy while satisfying some deep creative urge in her.
She even meticulously organised her loom band box with all the different bands, all by herself, so that it is now colour-coded and everything looks perfect.
That’s my girl. 😉🥇
Seriously, place your orders in! We have a colour for every occasion. 🔴🔵🟢🟡🟣🟠
I’ve now got my trifecta of footpath fiction, done, dusted, and PUBLISHED.
I headed on down to Rosebud today to find the other two pieces that have since been chalked on the footpath, as part of the Mornington Peninsula’s initiative for local writers to pen a 6-word micro-fiction containing the theme ‘community.’
(Note – I knew I had written two back when I submitted late last year, but in fact I had done three, and completely forgot about it!)
The first was:
“We hid. We waited. Now shine.”
The second which I discovered today:
“We walk these streets better together.”
And the third recent one? Check it out:
“Nature shines brighter after the storm.”
I actually love that one soooo much. Read the metaphor within.
There have been some major storms of late. I’m looking forward to skies clearing up, and everything looking better than new.
Everything looking sparkling, abundant, and BRIGHT.
(Check out @smikgwriter on insta for all the pics…)
I was going through old family photos this evening as I searched for photos of my Dad over the years, for his official birthday today.
I don’t know about you, but I get sucked into a time warp when I start doing this. I go through one year, then another, and another… suddenly I’ll look up from what I’m doing and be like “woah. Where am I?”
Like I’ve just woken up or something.
Photos transport you. I love going through them, and I’m trying my damndest to keep all my photo albums documented and in chronological order, though I’m very behind… but still trying.
And in thinking about photos, I realised that their ability to transport you to different times, and with different people, make them invincible.
They defy time and space.
They live forever.
It immediately made me think of words. Words live forever too. Think of the words you read by a poet 200 years ago… they breathe new life when you quietly repeat them in your mind, the meaning travelling through centuries to make its way to you.
And music. I LOVE music. Think of all the songs you love, from singers and bands that have long now gone, the words and the melodies that you continue to belt out in your car, when you’re doing the dishes, or in the shower… their lyrics and the music continue to live on through you, when you press play on your device, or decide to go acapella, wherever.
Art. Art is what it is. I love art, creativity, in all its forms.
Part of the reason is, IT CAN NEVER DIE. People, words, songs, they will always be revived when they are recalled, read, played.
Of course, they are passionate expressions of creativity, and that is simply the most beautiful thing. Even photography, it captures a moment in time, something that nothing else can quite do, and helps you to recall sudden scents, sights, a dress you used to wear when you were young, or a place you used to visit, and no longer do…
Photos can do all of this, and it was this I was reminded of when passing through the many years of my Dad’s life tonight.
They remind us of all the times of our life, when our own memories fail us.
How many other wonderful things will be captured by photo, that we are yet to live?
It was Monday evening, therefore Hubbie was off to his basketball game.
It left baby girl and me alone. I had made her fave… who am I kidding, OUR fave, spaghetti bolognaise.
We sat across from each other and ate, slurped, and talked.
The dynamic was completely different. And by no means do I mean it’s because Hubbie was gone. Rather, because it was 2.
I have no doubt the same would have occurred had I been out, and Hubbie had been home with her.
But we really talked. I asked her about school.
“What’s your favourite part of school?”
“Snack time and lunch.”
Well OF COURSE. It was always going to be play time. But I prodded some more. Learnt some things about their class. Their teachers. Her friends. And when I asked her to pick her favourite classes, she replied ‘art’ and ‘French.’
Awww. She’s already a young creative. I love it. 😍😍
I told Hubbie about it when he got home. I hope you too, can take something away from this.
Because it’s all well and good when you’re a family unit, together… but something changes when it’s just you and them. Maybe they feel more heard? Maybe they feel they can open up more? Whatever it is, I strongly encourage you to have a little dinner date, whenever it may be… with your littlie. 💖💖
Today I realised with amusement when we put Cobra Kai on, that baby girl is pretty much watching it too.
Hubbie and I pop it on, get excited by whatever 80s track they put on at the start, and then proceed to escape into the world of KA-RA-TAY for the next 30 minutes or so.
And lately, baby girl is joining us.
Why? On Sunday she got grounded… from playing on her ipad.
It was all Hubbie’s doing, and I’m not saying that like I disagree with his decision. Yes, she definitely had it coming after acting up majorly on the weekend. But when it comes to removing things from her, I am on the softer side.
If we’re at the shops and she asks for a toy – “No!”
She wants another chocolate? – “No!”
Wants to repeatedly bounce the basketball in the house? – “NO!”
But when it comes to removing things, I balk. I withdraw. Because if I remove something, most likely I’ll be the one paying for her upset state, since I AM home with her the majority of the time.
But this happened when I was out of the house, you see. Almost like a blessing in disguise.
Amazingly, it’s been a bit of a novelty for her. She talks about how she is grounded, and I think it makes her feel grown up, like a teenager. She hasn’t even asked for it back earlier… I would have caved in, without her even asking. Hubbie has been so tough, so strong… like the way I am usually! But this time, I’m like “aww, I feel sorry for her” (not in front of her of course, you can’t let your kids see your weakness, or else they’ll know they OWN YOU mwa ha ha).
She is meant to go without ’til Sunday… but I think she may get an early reprieve come the start of the weekend. 😁
But it’s seriously been good. She keeps herself busy with other activities, and I think it’s given her an appreciation and understanding of all the other creative things she can do with her spare time, and helped her to realise she actually CAN go without the bloody device.
And it means she spends more time with us, watching Cobra Kai.
Another device. 🤦♀️🤣
You get my drift. 😉
(Can someone confirm for me that Cobra Kai remains mildly kid-friendly for the rest of Seasons 2 and 3?)
Amazingly, I was happy to spend the day in the kitchen.
I enjoy cooking. I enjoy baking. I like finding new recipes, experimenting, and watching it all come together, the product of my hands putting it all to work.
I’ve been devoid of passion as of late, but I’ve been working through it, and getting by, bit by bit. This makes me proud, as having significant setbacks, it is then no mean feat to get up and keep trying. It has been freaking hard, but like my whole covid series, I am ‘getting there.’
Today, I made a yummy lentil soup that I got from my bestie’s nutritionist facebook page. I’ve made it before, and I’ve been wanting to make it again, but like I said, the whole lacking passion thing was a bit of a killjoy for getting anything done, much less making a soup I enjoy.
But I didn’t stop there. I made this apple cake recipe that I found months ago, and back then I even bought the granny smith apples I needed…. only to have Hubbie eat them when I never made the recipe, because you know…
LACK OF ALL PASSION.
But I bought those 4 granny smith apples again this week. I was feeling better, my mental clarity was improving, my emotional stability was settling, and it was all coming together, very slowly, once again…
So I made this today:
I actually wasn’t sure if it was baked properly, and kept it in the oven perhaps longer than I should have, until I read the facebook comments on the video and realised it was kinda like an apple crumble, and therefore was allowed to have that gooey kind of soft texture running through it.
I am absolutely pooped from baking and cooking and washing dishes most of the day, but I feel really good too.
I think one of the best pieces of advice I could give to any current or future parents, is this:
Show them what you love.
In particular, music.
Baby girl is exposed to a whole range of styles. From 70s/80s Queen, 80s Prince, Madonna of ALL ages, pop Justin Timberlake, melodic George Michael…
to contemporary music like The Weeknd, SIA, Ed Sheeran, Justin Bieber, Tones and I, and then there’s folk music, rnb music, UB40, songs from movies…
There’s a lot of different styles that she hears from us.
When you show your child what you love, you’re showing them what makes you happy. What makes you sing. What makes your heart soar.
You’re not actually sitting them down and saying “this is what makes me happy!”
It’s in the everyday moments. Putting the volume up for a song on the radio that makes you smile. Dancing in the kitchen because Funny How Love Is came on. Laughing along to that really annoying/catchy tune “Pump it Up,” and then turning everything into that song…
“You know clean it up, you have to clean it up!”
You’re making everyday moments come alive, you’re making them more fun, and most importantly, you’re making memories.
Like today for instance. Following a week of letting everything fall to the wayside in light of more important things, I was on a cleaning frenzy. I had Queen on, FULL VOLUME as I went about the house doing my thing.
I was in baby girl’s room changing her bedding, when Bohemian Rhapsody came on.
As the pivotal moment drew near…
“Oh mama mia, mama mia
Mama mia let me go…”
I quickly threw some things in her wardrobe –
“…Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me…”
I ran out of her room –
And ran down the hallway
“…FOR ME!” I squealed as I skid into the kitchen, with baby girl charging in from the lounge room.
And then we proceeded to do THIS:
Oh it was fun! The hair clip in my hair was knocking my head we were jumping and head banging so much.
And it was so cool, that I knew I could depend on her to run in to meet me near the stereo… just as she knew she could find me rocking out to a classic tune.
It’s got nothing to do with making your kids like what YOU like. That I am totally against. Children should be allowed to make up their own likes, dislikes, interests and passions, without their parents, or anyone influencing them.
I am fascinated to see what kind of young woman baby girl will grow into of her own accord, not from someone else she has tried to be like, or from someone who has made her feel she should be like them.
It’s about showing them your passions. They should be their own people. At the same time, it’s no wonder there are so many kids out there who followed in their parents footsteps, either by doing a similar profession, choosing a similar path, a like-minded interest… because they watched them obsess, fixate, and enjoy that thing, while growing up.
Baby girl doesn’t need to write. She doesn’t need to read. She doesn’t need to love Queen all her life.
But by sharing what it is that you love with them, you show them what a meaningful, purposeful, and beautiful life is.
At the end of day, whether it’s a life path of not… Creativity.
These are the things that make the world go round. Teaching our kids about them can only bring beautiful things.
At the very least, really funny head-banging memories. 😉
I have no time to write, because I am writing elsewhere.
I’m trying to hit a deadline, and that deadline is tomorrow, by about midnight, though I hope to God I hit it by evening.
I’ve made soooo many sacrifices these last few days, but I’m so busy I can’t even write about them.
The biggest sacrifice has been from baby girl. I have even cut back on her schoolwork and tasks, so important this deadline is to me.
She’ll catch up, it’s cool.
But she has been unreal, and so understanding. I had to meet her in the middle though… as soon as I finished work today, we had a coffee break, we played dolls together for several minutes… and then my butt hit the couch to write on my laptop.
She didn’t whinge. She didn’t complain. She didn’t bug me. She even left me in peace to write and edit and re-think EVERYTHING, and I am so grateful.
But, it’s not over. Even though I’m grateful for her understanding today, I’m praying some of it extends to tomorrow, since I have to review and rewrite two more chapters, go over my entire manuscript again, write a freaking 1 page-synopsis condensing approximately 88,000 words, while trying not to LOSE MY MIND while doing it.
I haven’t been writing as much as I like, and that’s got a bit to do with this cv business and balancing working from home with schooling baby girl from home, but it’s more to do with the OTHER.
The other is me fuelling all my creative energy into cooking new recipes.
It isn’t hard to find them after all. So many more people are putting together live recordings and sharing extra recipes to help us deal with this isolation, and just as well because we need something to do with all the extra time we aren’tgoing out.
And just the other day, I fell in love with a recipe idea I have been toying with for years now.
It was gnocchi. Rather, it has always been gnocchi. But this version was a sweet potato gnocchi.
Nom nom nom.
You know, some time ago I bought a packet of gnocchi from the shops, at the height of the shopping-covid frenzy when pasta was getting low to nothing on shelves… and I thought, being from a nice grocer and all, that this gnocchi would also be, nice.
I have only ever had, smooth, delicious, pillowy puffs of homemade or restaurant high-grade quality gnocchi.
So imagine my disappointment when this gnocchi tasted like plastic.
It was NOT nice. It honestly had a fake, manufactured taste, and I was spurred by the idea of homemade gnocchi even more.
So earlier this week when I saw Leah Itsines, self-taught cook, post on facebook that she was doing a live and making sweet potato gnocchi, I knew that soon, I would be too.
How great is technology? I knew I couldn’t follow her to make it at the exact time she did, but she was posting the video on YouTube later, so all I had to do was go to her channel today and voila!
The instructions were all there.
My gnocchi was deliciously homemade. It was so refreshing, to have it not taste like plastic! What do you know??? In fact, it tasted anything but. I think I made a pretty great first time gnocchi, and I even have extra that I have frozen for another time so that is SUPER EXCITING.
But that’s not even it. No folks. Topping that homemade sweet potato gnocchi was Jamie Oliver’s 3 minute tomato pasta sauce… another food guru I have started following lately!
And just as well that I had a 3 minute sauce recipe, since it took me hours and 26 dishes to make the gnocchi.
(All hail the dishwasher).
It’s so satisfying to make your own food. It’s amazing to experiment with different dishes, flavours and ingredients, and even to go out on a whim and try something you’ve been scared to for so long.
I can’t believe I made gnocchi, I am still so excited about it!
Next on my experimentation list? Well Leah has also made dumplings, and I LOVE DUMPLINGS… Marion Grasby has an egg drop soup that looks incredible… and Jamie Oliver and Oprah Winfrey recently made his Singapore-style fried rice together, over video call of course… ahh.