#547 The Penguin tradition

I was about 8 or 9 when I went with my parents, sister, her then boyfriend (my soon-to-be brother-in-law) and a whole lot of extended family and cousins, to Phillip Island, where as tradition has it, we saw the Penguins.

Today, for the first time in about 25 years, I went back… with the first-timers, Hubbie and baby girl in tow.

I may as well have been a first-timer, it has been that long. Being a Monday we thought it would be quiet. Like, I actually thought, there may be like, another group of people beside us… something like, 25 or so?

Try 25 HUNDRED. Or so.

There were soooooo many people. So many tourists, and buses, and guides, it was like OMG.

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Despite the crazy, we waited in the stands in the surprisingly calm Wintery air, and saw a few groups of penguins approach from the crashing night-time waves. After seeing half the crowd up and suddenly disappear within 20 minutes, we decided too to investigate and see if we could find any penguins who had made their way back from the sea, heading into their burrows and bushy-homes for the night.

We saw heaps. Baby girl was up close and personal with several of them, pressed against the barbed fence that separated the humans from the penguin track, saying “awww, so cute,” as they waddled past, and even waving goodbye to them as they made their way further and further in-land.

It was very sweet. And then once we had had our fill of penguin cuteness, some more adorable overload.

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I mean, when there is something so exceptionally life-sized, it is a MUST to pose alongside it, yes?

Penguin joy passing from generation to generation. I promise I won’t wait 25 years until next time.

#546 After the party

Today Hubbie and I were in FINE FORM.

It was a sunshine-y day. There was NO PARTY. No family, and no friends about.

We pumped the music LOUD. Actually, from two stereos – one from his car in the garage as he stored away spare chairs and tables from inside and tidied up from that end of the house, and me with the inside stereo, throwing up the volume as I washed, and cleaned, and tidied, and sucked every pesky crumb from the carpet I could find as I vacuumed with such jolly, ALL OVER THE PLACE.

And we couldn’t have been happier.

Because as much as we love throwing parties – damn it’s good when it’s over, your house returns to some sense of normality, and suddenly, the pressure is OFF.

No rush, no stress, no freaking pulling my hair out.

Just memories, a lot of mess, and ahh moments.

Ahhh. ‘Til the next birthday…

#532 An injection of Pink

Pink napkins.

Pink balloons.

Pink flowers.

Pink cookies.

Pink hearts.

PINK PINK PINK.

I took home some Pink today, because I was at a dear one’s Baby Shower.

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I think it’s a beautiful thing when people get together to celebrate the future meeting of a brand new person. This little bub will be a new member of our family, another girl to have fun with, dance with, laugh with, watch grow, and be a huge part of her life.

We need to celebrate like this, much much more. A new job. A new house. A new… anything! We need to call our loved ones over, crack open some bottles, and just celebrate life and appreciate all the beautiful things in it, the things that we are so lucky to have, the things we are ultimately, blessed with beyond words.

Life can be so dark sometimes. We definitely need more Pink.

And this lovely lady with Bub, is my younger cousin, who I consider like a little sister to me. I am so excited for her and this new chapter in her life, and I only just realised a beautiful coincidence tonight…

She and I are 4 years apart. When her bub is born, baby girl and this new baby girl, will be…

4 years apart.

Ahhh. Ain’t history brilliant in its ability to recreate itself?!

#524 Sister’s impromptu visit AND dessert

It was another fabulous Saturday night surprise, when sis and bro-in-law dropped in late this evening. And as much as I love love LOVE their company, there was a little, tiny itty-bitty, (actually not really that small) icing on the cake that topped it off.

Or should I say, chocolate mousse in a bowl that topped it off?

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I am a chocolate mousse girl, through and through. In fact, I think we need a re-birth of this typically 90s dessert. It is sooo delicious, yet oh-so-simple. Sis does a simple take on it, that leaves it feeling very light and moorish, a complete necessity since chocolate mousse that is too sweet is just NOT the way it’s meant to be. Nor is it meant to be cream. It’s meant to have lightness, air, and yes, a mild sweetness to it. Which is why I proclaim hers, THE BEST.

I hadn’t had it, much less thought about hers or any other chocolate mousse in such a long time, that when I saw it outstretched in her hands when she walked in, I didn’t do the obligatory ‘no, you didn’t have to!’ that so many people do when their guests bring food to their house.

Instead, I was –

“Ohhh, thanks! I haven’t had it in so long! Here I’ll pop it in the fridge straight away…”

Tee hee hee.

A couple of hours later, and baby girl was indulging in her first taste of her Aunty’s choc mousse.

SHE DEVOURED IT.

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Like Mama, like daughter.

Although the choc mousse was a pleasant highlight to the night, aside from that we had an awesome time together, the group of us. More music, more singing, more D&Ms… it’s always a fun and memorable night when its with those you love the most.

Tonight’s playlist included:

Baby I’m a Star – Prince

Are You With Me – Lost Frequencies

Jessie’s Girl – Rick Springfield (random youtube selections were trying to tell Hubbie and bro-in-law something…)

Do I Wanna Know – Arctic Monkeys

And due to some 80s raspy-voiced renaissance, Cyndi Lauper hits made a BIG mark on tonight too.

Sometimes I think, if we were fortunate enough to live right next door to one another, would we tire of seeing each other other all the time?

I don’t have to even think for that answer, really. The response is NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER.

EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER.

EVER.

EVER EVER.

EVER.

..

EVER.

.

 

 

#516 Meeting Skye

Another one was added to the list as baby girl came into arms reach (or should I say, Paw’s reach – total Dad joke I know) of one her latest Paw Patrol idols.

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She was full of energy and happiness, no hesitation in meeting such a BIG STAR, and went straight in for a hug, an adorable photo, and then even turned around to get a hi-five from the Pink Pup.

It was too cute, yet over very quickly, considering we had been standing in line to meet the character for over an hour.

We had delightful company though, which made it very bearable.

You see, coincidentally and lucky for us, we were in the shopping centre ‘hood of baby girl’s 3rd cousin, where we saw Skye today. They are two months apart, which makes them adorable to look at together. Can you just imagine 2 almost 4 year-olds running up and down and around the length of the queue, feigning drama at the long wait, and policing each other around, to our extreme amusement? Our smiles did not leave our faces 🙂

They are different, and yet so much the same. They compliment each other really well, and because of that get along great. They spent some time after the meet ‘n’ greet making their own Paw Patrol badges

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before a little play date at her cousins house. It is actually a joy to watch them two together, and as well as being grateful that baby girl put another notch on her celebrity/idol/character meet ‘n’ greet list, I was so happy she got to share it with her cousin, someone I have no doubt she will be very close to, and share special memories with, as the years go by.

Love love love.

♥♥♥

#513 The joy of coming out… as a Writer

This post has absolutely nothing to do with proclaiming that you are interested in the same sex… and yet despite the differences, I think, same same.

Because there is still fear attached.

Fear of being judged.

Fear of criticism.

Fear of gossip.

Fear of being told you’re unworthy.

Fear of people treating you differently.

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I took this pic tonight near my work. I don’t know why. I like the Ferris Wheel symbol – a huge manufactured orb-thing, shining brightly in the night, despite the shadows of black surrounding it. It is huge, and sometimes scary, but always shiny.

Wherever it shines, here it is bright.

And that’s how we should be with ourselves too.

Wherever we shine, here it should be bright.

We should not fear what others think or say about us. It is none of our business firstly, just as it is none of theirs what we think of them.

We all have our own opinions, but simultaneously, we should try and choose our company wisely, and keep those with our best interest at heart, close to us.

We should live our authentic selves, staying true to who we are and what we are here to do, and live this passion of ours as fully as we possibly can. We don’t know how long we are here for, so we should do whatever makes our hearts sing, now.

Where is all this leading?

Well, I’ve been super silent about my writings and my blogs, for many years now. Say 6 years. And in those 6 years, there are 7 people who have known what I was doing.

Only 7 people.

From last Saturday, it was 8. And from the weeks progressing forward, I will hit double digits… and keep the numbers moving up,

And you know why? Because I am ready. I’ve been thinking about telling people for a while now about what I do. But intense fear has stemmed from the almost certain  questioning and criticising that I would undoubtedly receive… and also, having people both close to me, and not so, who know who I am, reading every single one of my private thoughts that I’ve ever posted online… is terrifying.

I’ve been scared. I always knew this day of release would come, and I had to be ready for it, but I always told myself that I would ‘come out’ when I was published. When I had some kind of outside, literary confirmation that my work was good enough, then and only then would I say to everyone “hey! This is what I’ve been doing. This is me, and I am now officially “A WRITER.”’

But this is complete bull. Because you are not a Writer only because your work has been published. You are a Writer because you put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, and decided that this is where your passion lay.

This is what you would devote your life to.

This is what you want to do, above all else, even if you got no rewards for it.

That, is what makes you a Writer.

So, something I have feared for so long, I am getting really excited by. Because I am choosing wisely. I am choosing people to tell, who either understand and have an appreciation for the writing/reading process; those also doing what I do; and highly supportive family and friends.

I don’t need everyone to know just yet, I just need my circle to know-all. And I think that is what excites me. The fact that supportive people will be ‘in on it,’ and that with the release of the private information I’ve been guarding so closely to my chest, knowing it will be out there, well…

It scares me, excites me, and thrills me, to no end.

I don’t just write food reviews, and I don’t just write book reviews. I write about myself. My family. My fears, and my day-to-day life. My goals, my dreams, and every shit moment I have. I write about all the in-betweens, and knowing that people will be able to access this at whim, without the necessary “how’s things?” question to me at face value, does intensely freak me out and have me palpitating with sweats.

But it has to be done. I have to proclaim myself as a Writer, and I’m damn well excited about it.

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And as I came closer to the Ferris Wheel, I realised there was not much to be scared of, and it was smaller than what it seemed from afar… it was actually quite beautiful.

#511 Frozen Fun

It was always going to be a grateful day when we went to see Disney’s Frozen On Ice. None more so grateful that baby girl herself.

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She dressed up in her finest character-gear – the ‘Anna’ costume (which I secretly revelled in because she was going against the grain of every other girl dressing as Elsa);

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we jumped on a beachside train and had a fun trip into the city alongside other little people dressed as Frozen characters (baby girl became best friends instantly with a girl her age dressed as Elsa);

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and after the show, took a token piece of heavily-overpriced Frozen merchandise home, because you know, Disney marketing.

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Isn’t baby girl the one grateful for all this? Why would I even mention these things when all of the above points would have made HER excited and happy?

It’s because what makes her happy, makes us happy too. Thrilled. It was all done for her, but when you do something for someone out of love, the love just multiplies, until you too, are obsessively in love with Anna and Kristoff, and do a Lleyton-style fist pump when Anna smashes one across Hans’ face.

(Yes).

Such a beautiful day for baby girl, that made us smile, bonded us more as a family, and has left us absolutely pooped TO NO END.

Ahhh. Bed is looking good…