#660 A new find

It’s always nice when you and your family go to a new place to eat, and you see yourself going “yeah, I can see this working.”

Though it didn’t necessarily start off with good vibes. Fussy Butcher Hubbie’s beer glass was chipped; baby girl would NOT STOP WHINING because she wanted to go outside; and the service I got from one waitress was colder than the iceberg that hit the Titanic.

But then, there was a shift. Without going into too much detail, because, future Food Review (which you will probably get to read about in 6 months’ time –  I know, Queen of Suspense), but baby girl was happy running in and out – because of the closed off play ground outside she had access to; Hubbie, was well, happy regardless of any chipped glasses; and other waitresses were especially lovely. All round with food and noisy family-appropriate atmosphere, we were ALL pretty happy.

They were decked out in Christmas spirit too which helped.

IMAG7264

It wasn’t the best place we have eaten at. But the thing that hit the nail on the head? Because the food was decent, and baby girl was really content running in and out, we were… relaxed.

A 4 minute drive from home helps too.

Lots of gratitude for this new place today. 🙂

Advertisements

#653 After dinner views

We headed over to Kirks tonight. It’s been a while, but we love it there. The food is great, the atmosphere more so, and the staff are lovely.

The food $ is on the up-side… because you are paying for the view across the road too.

Which is…

Yep. Stunning ain’t it?

We knew we were going to head on over after our meal and walk about a bit, taking in the mild Spring air, and just being.

Also, I am totally a proper local now, I came prepared with thongs!

And then by the water, we just stood, and stared. And baby girl splashed.

I don’t even have to say it out loud. The photos say it all.

#637 Hubbie’s kindness

Today was a real Sunday.

It was the Sunday dreams are made of. No plans, aimlessly going here, and then there.

Gloriously sunny skies stretching out ahead.

Bustling roads and people out and about, making the most of the day – and us with them.

And overall, relaxing.

I had many things to be grateful for as I made my way through the day, and photo evidence was created along the way.

Relaxing with a coffee on the front porch in the mid-afternoon sun:

IMAG6723

Having a bite out – burritos:

Then some berry dessert to follow:

IMAG6760

And lastly, park play, with long admiring glances at hundred-year-old trees:

IMAG6776

It wasn’t until this last stop that my real gratitude came forward. Baby girl had gotten wind of the suddenly available swing, and was going absolutely mental on it. She has learned how to swing on her own, her legs going under and then out in front, as she takes herself to the sky, in her sweet words.

Beside her on the swing was another boy, trying to do the same thing. Hubbie and I watched from a few metres away, me still polishing off my melting ice-cream in the mild evening air, as baby girl squealed with joy, confidently, with strength, and pure happiness, while the boy, at least a couple years older than her, sat fairly still on the swing, trying to move about, but not getting much wind behind his swing.

We heard him call out to his Mum a couple of times. She was just behind us, her back to him, chatting to another Mum.

We glanced at each other. Hubbie made a few comments alongside the vein of “she can’t even hear him.” We were not Mum-shaming, and nor am I doing it now – I am just repeating the stone cold facts of the day.

We watched as this boy looked on at baby girl wishfully, at the same time calling out to his Mum with no hope in his voice – she had already said something dismissive as she had continued her chat with the other woman.

Hubbie said some more ‘interesting’ words… and then stood up. I urged him on with “I feel sorry for him,” but reminded him to be cautious too: you never know how a fellow parent will act when you start to parent their child.

Hubbie moved behind baby girl, pushing her (even though she didn’t need it!) while asking the boy if he needed help. The boy was alright on the seat, and I could hear Hubbie telling him “put your legs under… and then out. Now under… and then out. Great job.”

I smiled as I watched in amazement at the boy immediately responding to Hubbie’s instruction. He started to gain some speed in his swinging, and as he got up higher and higher, Hubbie gave him a swift and strong PUSH.

IMAG6769

The sun was setting behind them as I watched, and so I could only see their outlines – but I swear that boy’s face lit up with the biggest smile as Hubbie gave him that huge push, helping him get to baby girl’s height. She yelled in delight to be swinging so high alongside a fellow ‘friend,’ and Hubbie made a few more pushes behind the boy’s swing, urging him to keep going “legs under… then out.”

At the boy’s beaming face, my heart surged with pride at Hubbie’s selfless act. Hubbie couldn’t see his face. He was looking towards the boy’s Mum, with some amount of disappointment on his face, as she obliviously kept chatting.

The boy soon came to a stop, and as he shuffled his feet onto the ground below to stand up straight, his Mum now looked behind her. She laughed and said to her friend:

“Oh Alistair’s just sitting there, he’s fine.”

Oh, lady. You have no idea.

The boy soon got out of the swing and hurried off to another part of the park, while I went over to Hubbie and told him about the expression on the boy’s face.

And baby girl continued to fly up into the air.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#458 Impromptu Pho

I was busy at home when Hubbie charged through the doors this morning, high on his new hair-cut and wanderings through our humble-yet-bustling town, and declared “we are going to About Thyme for lunch!”

Really, we should have gone out last night, instead of this morning as I hurriedly made sweet treats in preparation for my parents anniversary on the weekend, prior to my late starting work shift this afternoon. So what do you think I did?

Amidst rolling 50 cake balls for my cake pops, I rushed through the batch (with attention-to-detail, of course) got ‘properly’ dressed, before we ran out the door.

We hadn’t been there in quite a while. And I immediately knew what I was going to have on such a still, yet grey day.

Pho.

IMAG4168

I was looking forward to the prawns also listed on the ingredients menu, but alas, I think not in season. Never mind. It was still warming, and tasty, and when I popped in a sliced chilli piece into the broth, so, so, sooooo spicy.

It had me watering at the eyes and gasping for breath, and then Hubbie over-confidently declared he would finish my chillies for me…

30 seconds and 4 chillies later, and HE was gulping down water with watery eyes.

Advantage of almost over-combusting? The heat almost totally cleared up my stuffy nose and sore throat that has been just hanging around for almost a week. So BIG points there.

(Note to self: bite into hot chilli next time I am sick).

A quick bite to eat out, with my family, unexpectedly on a dreary Wednesday before work…. Un-Pho-gettable.

(Sorry, I had to).

IMAG4169

#438 Kinder days no. 3

A week or two ago I was looking up local cafes, and came upon an awesomest of awesome cafes, with the most awesomest of awesome-looking meals, that had me immediately concocting how I was going to eat said meal.

The idea came to me quickly: ‘next time I’m free after dropping baby girl off at kinder, go there and EAT.’

Today, I went. And I ate this:

IMAG3907

It tasted as extremely beautiful as it looked. This acai bowl had me in love at first sight, and though I got brain freeze when I took in more than necessary in my first spoonfuls, of the icy blend beneath the surface, I very quickly learnt my lesson and ate the rest of the meal, s l o w l y.

Although I love socialising, I often need the timeout to recharge and refuel, and yet I never would have thought, 10 years ago, that I would now look forward to eating out on my own.

Hint to my future Food Review from today’s experience? ‘In a nutshell,’ I will be back. 🙂

Acai bowl made me happy and grateful this morning. Goal accomplished.

#391 Wine by the water

This is an alcohol-induced post, so it will likely be forgotten by tomorrow morning… I will wake at 9ish, and scratching my head, wonder ‘did I write my gratitude post last night?’

And wine-induced SmikG will already be posted over here on carcrashgratitude, with a smug ‘yep.’

I’m talking bullshit, let’s continue.

But, we went to a new restaurant by the water tonight, and with the rain pouring outside, providing an oddly romantic backdrop, we enjoyed a lovely dinner, and a lovely glass of wine.

IMAG3468

It’s the little things. Wine makes me happy, and that makes me grateful 🙂

#374 Reclaiming the past with Besties

Tonight, Bestie and her Hubbex came over to visit us in our new ‘hood.

It was a pretty rad night.

We have a pretty awesome history, us 4. I often wonder if the looks we get from other ‘friends’ are that of jealousy: I mean, bestie and I are of course, LONG-TIME besties, and when we get together, our Hubbies become equally as tight and crazy as us.

We were an integral part of their bridal party when they got married, which was right before I got pregnant with baby girl. It was an amazing day, and so special to be sharing it with them both, in such a close and intimate way.

But that was not the beginning, and it sure as hell won’t be the end. No. Our times together have many prior years and years on their wedding day… from after our high school years and through all of our twenties, birthdays and events, days out, dinner, catch-ups and plenty of laughter here, there and EVERYWHERE. I’m talking Hubbie and Hubbex jumping out of our semi-moving car after midnight singing “How Bizarre” at the top of their lungs on a Saturday night. I’m talking funny dress-ups, and stupid faces to the point that when we look back on them now, we laugh ourselves so silly that we do unintentional ab crunches from our laughter, our breath soundless and eyes all screwed up from the mad laughter that we are expressing.

I’m talking wine, I’m talking shots, and I’m talking plenty of D&Ms in-between. When I think of our long-standing history together, and think back through all of those years, I then realise how varied, vast and deep our friendship and experiences with one another are.

And generally speaking, I am proud of the maturity I’ve developed in response to the friendships and relationships in my life. Nothing remains static, stagnant. Things are ever-changing, and so too do many friendships take on a temporary ‘on hold’ spell, while life takes over, other things become more of a priority, and you move in different directions.

I love that quote, that says something like you know you have a true friend when you don’t always see each other, but when you get together it’s like no time has passed. Nothing is truer for this awesome-foursome.

Although all our lives are extremely busy, and we all have differing passions and interests and jobs that keep us entertained and out of trouble, we still make the time for each other, when we can. And tonight, while eating and drinking, listening to a whole variety of musicians and getting extremely excited over them, talking the deep philosophy of Beyoncé’s image, pruning roses, allowing baby girl to do multiple renditions of Let it Go, turning our staircase into ‘ice’ as she stamped down on the landing, and shooing off cats, we had a smashing time.

We have matured, we are older, and we have more responsibility present in our lives… but it is still us. And US, has still got IT.

Take care of your true friends, because it takes a long time to gain an ‘old friend.’ They are precious and much sought after.

After tonight, I think our future together looks just as happy/funny/silly/meaningful/profound/bright, as ever 🙂