#2542 A Christmas snapshot

I’ll set the scene for you.

I’m in the kitchen this evening, starting off my Christmas sweets. Tonight it’s almond snowballs.

You know, the good stuff… condensed milk, almond spread, sugar and dessicated coconut.

I’m rolling them into 30 balls.

Baby girl has decided to put on Michael Buble’s Christmas album (I’ve taught her well) and DANCE.

And so here I am, roll, roll rolling…

While next to me, she is dance, dance, dancing.

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”

Photo by Iu015fu0131l Agc on Pexels.com

#2530 That’s my (singing) girl

Today was a big day, more so for baby girl. She had a friends birthday, and then we all went to a wedding in the afternoon.

The day was beautiful in every way. But there was a particular moment in the night that had me grinning like a Cheshire cat.

Towards the end of the night the band left their musical posts to have a break, and some people, being a little loose and happy and brave, ventured up to the mics to talk, sing and entertain the crowd.

Baby girl got excited, and joined in.

At first I was like ‘stop,’ because she was kinda yelling at the beginning. Like, if you’re gonna talk in a mic, don’t yell, it’s loud as it is… but as she watched the other people comment in the mic and sing along to the backing songs, she started to do the same.

I let it go. I watched her “ooh, ooh” along, make comments, get embarrassed every time in between, BUT… come back for more.

I was fascinated. I was fascinated because she has expressed an interest in singing and dancing for a little bit now, but I think the thought of performing also makes her very nervous.

And here she was, in front of a room full of people, singing along to Paul Simon’s “Call me Al.” 🤦‍♀️🤣

It was beautiful to watch. I think she thought I was going to tell her to stop again, but instead I took out my camera and took as many snaps as I could.

It might just be a kid thing, wanting to hear her voice amplified, sure… but you know, with a lot of these things, you just never know.

I will always be there, encouraging and cheerleading for her, just in case.

And her dancing, my God I was impressed. The times she was on the dancefloor tonight was the biggest joy to watch. Even though my extra weight was bearing down on my heels, so many times I got up just so I could dance with her.

My girl. My singing girl. My dancing girl. My growing up girl who I love watching every, single, time, and every, single, day.

😍😍

#2470 Baby moving and grooving

So, tonight we learnt while reading What To Expect When You’re Expecting, that baby is 20cm long now, and 450 grams… the size of about two chicken breasts. 😆

And at 22 weeks pregnant, there is a lot of movement, a lot of kicking. I read that if you shine a bright light on your belly you may feel baby move because they can detect light now, so we tried it. As if baby doesn’t move enough, we used the torch function on my phone to shine it over my belly, just because.

Nothing. Absolutely nothing at all. I have deduced either this baby is shy, or very cheeky, and deliberately won’t work with us because it knows what we want. 🤔

I’m kinda thinking the latter because of the family it comes from. 🤦‍♀️

But then the book also said it can hear our voices, all sounds really, and Hubbie thought it important to start singing to it.

He first did a very baritone “Bus driver please wait for me,” to which I said “you’ll give baby a fright with that tone.”

So, of course, he picked Dragon to start serenading to baby.

“April Sun In Cuba.”

And then baby girl was joining in, and back and forth they sang and took turns singing alone and with each other, and sure enough –

Bump, bump, roll, twist, bump.

Baby was there moving around to it all. Perhaps even dancing. Who knows? 😁

I think baby liked it. 🥰

#2453 Dancing and d&ms

Tonight was such a great night.

It really makes a difference when ALL family members are happy.

Baby girl had her cousins… I had my family and cousins… and well, Hubbie just gets along with everyone. 😆

There was dancing, there was d&ms… there was even drive-through at the end of the night. 🤣

One of those nights that are so good, you want it to keep going… and going…

#2446 Full of love and sparkles

Today was one of those days that I’ve looked forward to for a long time, and not just for the obvious reasons either.

We had a long-awaited, dear friend’s child’s christening, which was filled with much love, dancing, happiness, and of course the obligatory hand/face painting.

And then following that at night we had a dinner dance, and so on we went…

More love, more dancing, more happiness, and plenty of kicking from baby. 🤰

The day and night were light and easy, and we flew high like the bird on baby girl’s hand, dropping sparkles every where we went… 😁💫

#2389 Feeling the Rain

When you’re sick you don’t really have the desire to do the things that usually make you happy, because you lack all motivation for it. So when I put on a favourite CD tonight as I prepared dinner, I knew I was on the up again.

Madonna, Something to Remember. I love these slow, melodic, romantic and woeful songs, especially when times are slow and dark and cold such as this. They really allow me to be present with my thoughts, feel the songs properly, and appreciate them for the beautiful melodies and lyrics within.

I paused the album as we ate dinner, then hit play again as I went to wash up. A very familiar song started up, and I like, froze. I had to listen to it properly, no interruptions, and I said as such to Hubbie as he moved around the kitchen, telling him I was trying to appreciate the song.

It’s one I’ve shared here before in depth, and I will do it again for the strength of emotion it brought forth in me tonight. It’s not only one of my favourite Madonna songs, but one of my favourite songs of all time.

Rain.

There’s just something about rain for me. I can’t explain it. There is great symbology present for me, and it isn’t just that it’s connected to my novel in a big way. It’s been my fascination, a sense of curiosity, wonder, for as long as I can remember. I wrote about it before, and I feel the same, if not so much more about this ethereal element of Mother Nature.

I listened to this song, and I was feeling it. Every single word. I was quiet, my face distorting because seriously I was going to cry. Call it this past week, my body having gone through a wide range of physical and mental things, but I was seriously emotional.

The song finished, and I couldn’t help it, I had a cry. The last time I had listened to it I was different. The last time I had written about it I was different. Today, again different. I thought about life, the unexpected beautiful and difficult things that hit us in the face, throwing us off balance, I guess, a bit like unexpected rain.

But rain is beautiful. The song is beautiful. And I think if we learn to embrace all of life’s changes, good and bad, just like a well-known quote, we will be able to dance, no matter what.

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass… it’s about learning to dance in the rain.”

I’ll share the video again, just because it makes me so happy. 🥲🌧️💖🎶

#2333 Thanks for the memories

It’s awfully hard to say goodbye.

So instead, I’ll focus on the memories. Of my uncle.

I’ll start with a recent memory, even one that I’m pretty sure was shared today in church. My uncle was telling me at a family gathering not too long ago, about some of the family history. Not only does this kind of stuff fascinate me, as he is my Mum’s brother, but I find it amusing how each sibling often has their own version of events.

They are all true, of course! But still, their own take on it.

And I was eagerly listening to what he was telling me, and I can tell you honestly that I can’t remember what it was, but I remember one thing CLEARLY.

He was saying how he was the third born child in their family, but the first son. A huge grin spread across his face. This made him happy, proud, giddy like a child. I smiled with him, his worth and self-esteem at this fact so apparent, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget that moment. In a fairly patriarchal time, having a son was something revered strongly, just because well, having a boy, as well as the obvious fact that they carry on the family name, so it was clear this was spoken about, celebrated even.

He was certainly happy about it.

***

He was always happy, actually. He’d usually start talking to me, with a bit of a straight statement, that immediately turned into a joke, and honestly the second sentence in he’d be laughing, me joining in.

***

Hubbie got along with my uncle too. Hubbie told him countless times that he was the best dancer, told me too, and anyone that would listen… he was light on his feet, fast, and moved so easily, that he was able to dance to traditional folk music like no other. It truly was a joy to witness, a special thing to be in the presence of. To this day Hubbie is adamant, no one in my family is as good a dancer as he, with his grand-daughter a close second… of course, it runs in the blood. I imagine him dancing up there, ripping it up and having a ball.

***

But my fondest memory, isn’t really a specific memory, it’s a collection of them. Because as a teen growing up, my parents along with all of my aunties and uncles, would get together and play cards, A LOT.

It was always the women against the men. So my Mum and her two sister-in-laws, along with my Dad and his two brother-in-laws. I would be home… chilling in my bedroom, listening to music, watching a movie… and they would be carrying on like nothing else on a Saturday night. Can you imagine, six 60 year-old somethings making noise like there were 30 in the house? There would be laughter from the winning teams. Angry outbursts from the losing teams! There was banging on tables as they went “Na!” and slammed their cards down in a ‘take that!’ move. And after they had all had their fill, sometimes a few games, sometimes eight, they would keep talking, eating, drinking coffee, way into the wee hours of the morning.

I really loved them being there. It made me happy. Seeing my parents happy, made me happy. Seeing my uncles and aunties happy, made me happy. Seeing them all together, having fun, laughing, getting cross at each other, accusing each other of cheating (😮😬😆) and making memories, is one of my best memories of them all. Because they had each other. They were having a ball, with none other than their very own family. I realised even at that young age, how special it was, and thought often, too often actually, how lucky they all were. They were all present, they were all there. They were each other’s peers, sharing all their happiness, troubles, all stories.

When I was younger I would sit with them, counting my Mums cards. When I was older, I would wonder into the kitchen sometimes at midnight, and they’d be there in the next room, playing cards. Sometimes they would acknowledge me, sometimes they’d stare seriously at their set of cards, as if the state of the world depended on it. Other times I would go to sleep, and they’d whisper loudly as they passed my bedroom, leaving the house at 1:30am.

This memory has nothing to do with me. But I was witness to it, and seeing the love around that table, hearing what transpired, the good, and the incredibly funny… I will never forget it. It was the best time. For all of us.

You can’t choose who your family are, but you can choose who you spend your time with. And they chose each other, time and time again.

Rest in peace Ujo. I don’t think I can look at a set of cards or hear a kolo, without thinking of you fondly.

Your smile is etched forever in our hearts.

😢💖🙏

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

#2298 A score of CDs

I had the day off work today, and in an effort to reclaim what little holidays baby girl has left before going back to school next week, we went out for a day of shopping.

A day of shopping, doesn’t just mean shopping. It means lunch. Coffee time, which means coffee for me, ice cream or a doughnut for her.

And most importantly, it means bonding time. 💝🥰

We did well, getting lots of little things here and there… none for me and Hubbie, OF COURSE, but that all changed when we went into JB…

We walked out with a CD for each of us. 😁

Can you tell which is for which?

Baby girl saw the Disney CD and really wanted it, and to be honest I have thought of getting her something like this already, but even more so recently because she has been singing and dancing so much lately. I have to wonder if she’s really relaxed and happy to be on holidays, and will the dance and sing act finish when she goes back? I hope not. We hear her humming and singing to herself a lot, and she puts on CDs just so she can dance… so why not a Disney CD? She knows most of the songs/movies, and I have to divulge… I know just as many. 😆

The new The Weeknd CD for Hubbie, called Dawn FM. This came via request on the phone when we spoke for lunch, and it was literally the last CD in the new release section, so I’m glad he scored this even though he wasn’t there to enjoy the day.

And lastly, well of course, Queen. 👑 This is actually their 3rd album, and to date I have numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, two greatest hits, and also a radio recordings one. Soon I will be one of those people writing articles about Queen in magazines (you watch!) Putting this on at home was like a kid opening up a candy bar… I like to buy new Queen CDs only after I feel like I have really exhausted the others. I want to be in the time in which it was recorded, feel it, sing it, dance it and only when I am very familiar, move on. Getting them all at once would be no fun. No. You gotta wait a little. Long for it a little.

As much fun as I had listening to my new CD tonight, baby girl and I actually had more fun singing along to…

“I Just Can’t Wait to be King” (The Lion King)

“Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” (Mary Poppins)

“Under the Sea” (The Little Mermaid)

“How Far I’ll Go” (Moana), and

“A Whole New World” (Aladdin)

I wish I had this CD when I was younger! She is so lucky. 😆🥰🥰🥰🥰

#2230 Swinging Sundays

I feel like my New Years intentions have been going well so far.

One of the major ones was to keep things more simple and to stay as relaxed as I can.

We were helping my sister and bro-in-law move some furniture at my parents place for new carpet to go in, work which lasted an hour or so in the late morning…

And then in true and perfect work-life balance form, we then relaxed for THE REST OF THE DAY.

20% work, 80% living. 😉👍

We swam in the pool.

We ate.

We nibbled on snacks.

We talked.

We tickled.

We danced kolo on the lawn!

We laughed.

And we swung.

Baby girl kept calling me over to the swing set, and only once I was lying next to her and moving back and forth, did I realise how incredibly relaxing it was!

It was a pretty perfect Sunday. 💖🥰

#2138 Dancing amidst the madness

Crazy, crazy, pre-Christmas days.

They are so crazy, I have to remember where my head is at. I was so edgy as baby girl and I finally found a park in the super busy shopping centre today, that when we got back to the car after a trolley full of Christmas shopping 90 minutes later, I couldn’t find my keys.

I searched, and searched, and searched my bag. Then something dawned on me…

I tried to open the car door… it opened.

I had left my keys in the ignition. 🤦‍♀️

Oh man. I am so lucky everyone else had lost their head like me today, and so no one took my car. 🤣🤣

But amidst all the running around, I found it really important to find moments to be silly with baby girl. To let our hair down, have fun.

Of course the Christmas carols were going on in the background most of the day.

I let her lick bowls of batter, because why the hell not? I joined in too.

We danced around the kitchen, and then when The Wiggles appeared on the carols on TV tonight, we danced to them too.

I found myself participating in these random moments throughout the day, where I would just break out in fun, and it didn’t only put a smile on her face…

It made my whole, craze-filled, lost-my-head day, feel so much lighter too.

What’s the phrase… fake it ’til you make it?

So in this case, dance ’til you’re actually dancing. 💃🕺🎶🎶