#1434 The Mermaid

Today I’m grateful for… the mermaid.

What? I hear you ask. “You mean Ariel, the animated character, surely.”

Nope.

A real-life mermaid.

Well, as real as anyone is gonna get to, according to those who were at Seaford beach today.

Baby girl and I met up with some family friends there, to see the event that was Tarielle, the mermaid, swim to shore and talk about mermaid life.

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And pose for pictures, of course!

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It was quite the spectacle. About a hundred parents and children gathered after 1pm to watch the shimmery figure of Tarielle, swim up to the sand, with delighted and captivated kids barely able to contain themselves.

This girl mermaid was amazing. I can’t imagine the body strength required to swim in that… ‘fishtail,’ and sit at odd angles for 3 hours talking and posing, while making her tail splash intermittently.

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What an effort. For a mermaid that is. πŸ˜‰

But it wasn’t all entertainment. This mermaid came with a message. Amidst the sweet smiles and jokingly telling us she was grumpy when they made a movie about her sister and not her, she was there to talk about the environment, keeping the oceans free from litter, and asking the kids to pick up rubbish whenever they saw it out and about.

Such a great message for impressionable minds.

Do you know what baby girl and her friend did then?

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They went searching for litter. Fortunately they didn’t find any. β€πŸ§œβ€β™€οΈ

 

 

#1429 Sharing the beach love

Okay, so it’s not MY beach. But when your friends visit you from across town and ask for a beach-playdate-destination-recommendation, you kinda feel like a part of you is being exposed, on show for all to see.

I was pleased, because it was a pretty perfect beach day.

Still, sunny, but with some cloud cover at times. The water was mild. The kids had shallow waters.

Us Mums were (mostly) happy. Kids make that sentence ‘mostly.’ 🀣

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But it wasn’t just the fun and frivolity of being on sand, or wading on water that made today fun and totally chillax-worthy.

I felt there was a lot of meaning attached to the day. Sure we were on the beach and all, but I couldn’t help thinking of how we had come to the beach that day.

I was thinking of friends, and friendship, A LOT. It was two of my oldest friends that I was with today. They with their brood, me with mine. And it had nothing to do with watching the kids play, fight, argue over who had the body board next or lie in the water and float, things we used to imagine way back when in high school when we’d say to one another that our kids would be friends just as we were.

It was more about the ‘time.’ That all-too-important commodity that everyone argues they have little to none of. I was thinking of how we were all there on the beach, dedicated to the task of spending time together, our kids having fun together, while there were so many other things in our life distracting us, so many other things we could do, and so many other places we could be.

But we chose to be there.

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It was humbling. It was heart-warming. When someone chooses you to be the place they spend their time with, it is something special. In a world where the word ‘busy’ flies out of our mouths all too often, it was a day where we chose each other, and in doing so made one of the best sacrifices of time and best decisions possible:

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Because we made memories for not only us, but THEM. β€πŸ–

#1427 Saturday Night In no. 8

A Saturday night in, but a loud, passionate and fun one with the best company.

It can get a little crazy.

It can get a little noisy.

And it can get a little rowdy, but that’s how things are when we combine, us with sis and bro-in-law, and best man and fam.

The kids will be running around the house at full speed, (and I don’t know how they don’t collect themselves on corners more often) flying past us adults gathered around the kitchen island, clicking glasses and listening to the latest tune selected that is blasting out of the portable speaker.

It’s love.

No really, it is. We were singing “That’s Amore” with booming voices, swaying to and fro and laughing at ourselves.

“When the world seems to shine

Like you’ve had too much wine

That’s amore.”

It sure is. ❀🍷πŸ₯‚πŸ»πŸŽΆ

#1422 ‘Twas the ‘second’ night before Christmas…

What? She must have her dates wrong you say.

No siree.

It really is the night before Christmas… for those of Orthodox faith.

It’s an interesting thing to celebrate two Christmases throughout your life. It’s a privilege now awarded to baby girl as she joins in the doubled up of festivities.

Growing up, although the primary Christmas we celebrated was on the traditional Westernised date of December 25th, due to my Mum’s background and heritage we were always aware of at the very least, if we weren’t helping our relatives celebrate the Orthodox Christmas day of January 7th.

Seeing as Hubbie’s family is also of Orthodox faith, this acknowledgement and acceptance has grown and continued. All of my life, family and friends around me have celebrated this day… I have been to countless Christmas parties and participated in token Orthodox traditions, drank and ate and been merry on this holiest of days.

Which nationalities celebrate this day you might ask? Well there are Macedonians, Serbians, Polish, Russian, and Greek, to name a few…

I think it’s important to respect and value other traditions, even those that we may not be privy to or understand in the fullest.

Just as living in Australia, I believe that Australian customs should be respected and appreciated by all those who choose to call this country their home, so too do I believe the reverse should be norm: Aussies should respect the traditions and heritage of those with customs and holidays from far off our shores.

Including a different Christmas.

Sometimes I hear a bit of ignorance. One side might discount the other, calling theirs the ‘real Christmas.’

I think this is a bit sad. I don’t think we should be arguing over religion and politics and trying to up our own stance by discounting the other.

Why can’t we all respect each other’s traditions while still enjoying our own?

THIS GOES BOTH WAYS.

Baby girl went to bed tonight excited. She was asking if Santa would come again… I told her he only makes one stop a year, but that there would still be PRESENTS.

We did the majority of presents on the Westernised Christmas day, but I have an inkling she will get something. πŸ˜‰

A second Christmas for a kid? That’s like a second birthday!

She, and we, are fortunate to have double the Christmases, every year. β™₯

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Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

 

#1416 Who you’re with on New Year’s Eve

It doesn’t matter if you have fireworks.

It doesn’t matter if you’re at a raging party.

It doesn’t matter if you’re on the banks of a river, on a 25 storey high-rise, or up on a bridge.

It doesn’t matter if you are surrounded by 100 people, or 1.

All that matters is that you’re with people who you love, and who love you.

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(Oh, and some Moet and choc-dipped strawberries don’t go astray either). πŸ˜‰

Hope your New Year 2020 is all you want it to be. β€πŸΎπŸŽ‰β€

 

#1401 Writing Christmas Cards

“Why do I write Christmas cards?”

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It’s a question I sometimes ask myself. Maybe you yourself have wondered why you do it, or more likely, thought about how writing cards is so old-fashioned, and so out-dated, right?

The process for me starts like this.

I need the right pen. Not a cheapie either. I need one that’s a good few dollars and is ‘medium’ only please.

I sit. I sit in silence, and I think of what to write for everyone that year. I will write the same thing for all my family and friends, but still I try to alter it, if only a little, year after year.

I try to write and send them as close as possible to the start of December, but let’s face it that doesn’t happen often. If I know I’ll see someone around that time, I’ll only write their card and hand it to them in person… otherwise I end up sending the majority of them, through post.

Like today.

Secondly, why I write…

Digital is so much easier. Instant. You can forward any Christmas animation onto your contacts, chuck your name on the end and voila!

Christmas greetings done.

I don’t care much for that.

That’s not to say I don’t like getting those messages… but there is something sacred and special about putting pen to paper…

writing a heartfelt message…

writing out all the addresses…

affixing stamps and other Christmas-y stickers on the back to seal the envelopes…

and then putting them all in the bright red post box.

I LOVE IT.

I don’t do it because I expect any in return. Nooo. If I were doing it for that reason I would only be sending out 5, as opposed to 30.

No. It’s not about the receiving.

It’s all about the giving.

There’s something so special about going to your mail box and finding your name on a festive envelope. Knowing you have been wished a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year inside it.

The system of writing the cards also gets me in the Christmas spirit. As time consuming as it sometimes can be, I think this is so much part of my tradition, that if I weren’t to do it, it would feel a lot less like Christmas.

And today, with almost all cards sent, I feel like the countdown to Christmas has really begun.

I can feel it.

I have been sending out wishes, after all. πŸ˜‰

So many people say to me – “I don’t do Christmas cards.”

That’s okay. I don’t expect you to.

But I do them. I do Christmas cards, and whether you give me one or not, makes no difference.

It is a part of my nature… whether it’s because I love Christmas, I love writing, or I love the old-fashioned form of sending and receiving via snail mail…

All in all, it’s a beautiful tradition, that I hope never dies out. If I can I’ll keep it running.

And I hope in a few days time there will be people all over the place, smiling as they open the festive envelopes I sent them.

Because that’s why I do it. To spread the Christmas cheer πŸ™‚

I β™₯ Christmas.

#1386 KK by the river, 2019 edition

When the day started off by walking on a wall, we just knew it was going to be amazing.

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Special. Different even. And it sure was.

ALL of us getting together around a table, girls and partners and kids, and there was not one person missing? Not one that didn’t pull out due to injury/sickness/over-commitment/boredom?

Why I never.

NOT ONE.

These things only happen like once a decade peeps. Hence theΒ special. πŸ˜‰

It was our annual KK catch-up pre-Christmas festivities, and it came nice and early on the first day of December, and the first day of summer (though summer was nowhere to be seen…)

Did we care? Nooo.

We were nice and snug and sheltered.

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And then there was the item of presents.

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GOODY!

The kids chased ducks outside and threw sticks and leaves into the Yarra outside to ‘help’ them float, and us adults chilled and bonded and watched our guys bond too.

Awww. Don’t you just love it when your guys make friends. They don’t admit it but they enjoy it too πŸ˜‰

And so, a pretty perfect day was had. I love being with my gals but it’s even more amazing when we come together as couples and family units and spend our Sunday lunch together, our common tie and reason for uniting being the pubescent group who went to high school together and promised that one day our kids would play with each other while our guys would make friends too, all those years ago.Β  β™₯

And now I have new writing implements so there… (make sure you do KK with people that ‘know’ you, then they won’t get your presents wrong EVER).

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The only downfall with doing KK soooo early?

The debate I’ll be having with my 6 year-old until Christmas day… because baby girl got presents too. Times 4 today.

“I wanna open my presents!”

“No, you have to wait until Christmas! It’s called patience.”

“But I can’t wait!”

“You have to wait!”

“How long until Christmas?”

“24 more days…”

Help me, please.Β