#875 Sunday funday BIG day

Today’s super BIG day started at the super wee early hour of 5am.

And it wasn’t accidental or by unwanted force – no, the wake up call was all instigated by ME.

Crazy huh? Yeah, I know. I even set the alarm and EVERYTHING.

If it hadn’t been for the mammoth day ahead, my wake up call would have been an hour earlier… but alas, I needed some sleep. I knew what was ahead of us, and yet I also knew that I couldn’t miss out on possible celebrations…

So I left my phone on silent on the bedside table as I went to bed on Saturday night, the FIFA schedule and results up on my internet browser, so that when the alarm did wake me at 5am, I would see the half-time scores of the FIFA game playing right then.

I figured if my team were losing by a big margin, I would keep on sleeping.. anything close in competition, and it meant wakey wakey for me.

It read Croatia – 1: Russia – 1

Damn. Kind of. RIP sleep. It would have to come another day.

So my first gratitude of the day came after several dozen heart attacks through the roller coaster of a match, where FINALLY Croatia won in yet another penalty shoot-out!

Guys! What are you doing to me?!?! :):):)

There was no point in going back to bed. Because there were places to be.

The first show of the day brought with it my second gratitude.

Lah Lah’s Big Live Band 10th Birthday show. Can I just reiterate how amazing they are? It certainly isn’t the first time we have seen them or been up close and personal… but not only did Tom Tom the drummer willingly and of his own accord sign all of the to drums before the show, but Lah Lah added to it with her own signature, on the drum and on the mini doll.
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My third gratitude of the day came with the realisation of an exhibition I have been longing to see. The thought of works from New York being shown outside of the States and in Australia was reason enough on its own, but knowing I could see up close and personal some incredible and influential art, one of which is a favourite of mine in both artist and painting, was an opportunity I couldn’t ignore.

My favourite, (top right) ‘The Persistence of Memory,’ by Salvador Dali. Did you know Dali used the hypnagogic method in helping to inspire his artwork, whereby he would take his daily siesta holding a spoon above a plate… and when it fell, it woke him, taking him from the grey area between awake and sleeping, this pre-sleep stage that provided him with the most fantastical images of the unconscious world.

Crazy. My kind of crazy though. 😉

And last but not sleep… the final gratitude of the day. From merely a decade of Lah Lah, to a century of Disney on Ice!

 

The best parts? Discovering our seats were THE BOMB, along with watching baby girl act out with absolute glee all of the Frozen scenes, pure joy for her since she was dressed as the Ice Queen herself 🙂

And right now, I am pooped. It was an amazing day, a BIG day, but I need balance.

Tomorrow, I might have to do BIG NOTHING.

And I will be BIG grateful for it 🙂

#802 Parcels of boy/joy

I placed the order at least a month ago. Not long ago I got 1 out of the 2 parcels I was expecting, and then I proceeded to wait… and wait… and wait…

I started to worry the second package had gotten lost in the mail, so I went through my junk mail folder to find a confirmation email from the supplier that had a tracking code for my parcel.

I would click on it every day, and watch the status update:

Arrived and processed in NSW Australia Post

Arrived and processed in Sunshine Australia Post…

I watched and waited, eagerly waiting for the next heading underneath to light up.

Today it did.

Your order will be delivered today!

So, when I saw a Fast Track van come to a stop near our house after I had picked up baby girl from kinder today, I wasted no time.

I mean, we had waited a month for this. Hubbie was home for lunch too, and there was no way I was letting him miss out. This, would be GOLD. I ran off to a closet where I had stashed the first, unopened parcel, and then ran into baby girl’s play area to find two of her dolls – Anna from Frozen and Rapunzel from Tangled.

Because you see, I wasn’t excited about a parcel or special something I had ordered for myself… even something for Hubbie… but the object of my wild anticipation at crazy happiness was for our little girl. A little girl, who would no doubt have a big reaction at what she didn’t know was coming.

Because two of our girl’s favourite dolls, were getting BOYFRIENDS today.

Baby girl had expressed sadness some time ago that in playing with her dolls, she couldn’t marry off Rapunzel and Anna to their on-screen movie beaus – that being Eugene and Kristoff. Although what she calls them are the girls ‘best friends’ – aww, so perfectly fitting when you think about it. There were none to be found in any toy shops we visited, and I knew there and then that they would undoubtedly be found online, but of course, for a $.

I found them for a somewhat ‘ok’ price. And all of this time, feigning that I didn’t know how to find them, that we had to keep looking, pretending it wouldn’t happen, I was secretly brimming with helpless excitement, at the thought of baby girl LOSING HER FREAKING MIND.

And she did. I brought over her dolls and told her they wanted to look in the boxes – the presents were for them, NOT for baby girl. Baby girl protested, even though she was clueless to the contents “yes it is for me!”

“Are you sure?” I asked cheekily as I slit the tape from the boxes to make it easier for her to open.

OH THE SCREAMS! The high-pitch! Her high voice already makes me deaf, and today I was made more so. Watching her losing it over dolls she wasn’t expecting AT ALL, especially today, was such a joy to witness, I laughed out loud during it all. SO WORTH IT.

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You can be sure we spent most of the day following the delivery playing with her dolls… and after all of her earlier fanfare, she tells me now that Eugene and Kristoff DON’T want to marry their girls.

Ha. Typical boys.

 

 

#781 The heart symbol

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What do you think the symbol for the above heart represents today?

My heart-to-heart with Hubbie where I spewed all my troubles onto him, and I didn’t feel I was worrying him, he just listened and heard me? That was heart.

Baby girl serenading me at bedtime, singing “I love you you you you you, I love you you you you you…”? That made me laugh, and it was ALL heart.

Playing Frozen Bingo with my family? Memories – heart.

Actually, the heart moment happened this afternoon, when baby girl caught up with an old kinder friend today at the park, and her friend handed her this envelope. It contained a card inside, with a drawn picture of the two of them holding hands, and the word ‘Love.’

And although all of the above things gave me some hope of heart today, it was this little gesture of growing friendship and reciprocated love, that made my heart swell.

Oh, my heart. ♥♥♥

 

 

#764 Games with our girl

We spend so much of our lives, rushing from A to K to Z, thinking of the future, reminiscing about the past, and constantly in a state of planning, that we often forget to live, engage and be in the present.

It’s synonym is gift for a reason.

I always have things to do. I guess, duh Fred, EVERYONE’S life story. I guess my point is, in my spare time I rarely am lounging about watching hours of TV on end. I try to limit my social media use when it is just aimless trawling trawling trawling through news feeds. Recently I’ve begun planning out my days meticulously, so I can get in the maximum number of productive seconds, minutes and hours out of it that I can while baby girl is at kinder. This usually involves Zumba, some kind of writing, and then doing some sort of house-related organisational activity, a work in progress that is 18 months growing following our move (still!)

But just as I am always trying to tick things off my never-ending eternal to-do list, so am I realising I need to sometimes, just stop. Sit and DO nothing, for like, 5 minutes. Go through that mag that’s been sitting on the coffee table.

Play with baby girl.

I am very aware of her words to me. I am also aware of phrases I use like “I’m too busy,” “I can’t now” and “after.” I don’t like to use them, and then again, at times you can’t avoid them. You will be in the throes of something, let’s say dinner, and if I were to stop and go and play with baby girl’s barbie dolls, well our dinner would end up being blackened chicken schnitzel with burnt mini pizzas and soggy vegies.

But as was the case today, I stopped. Baby girl asked if we could play an exciting game, and I paused – I am so used to thinking of what I am doing next that I didn’t even realise that there was nothing I had planned for that moment – and said “sure. Let’s play.”

She was to be sleeping beauty, and I was to get her Anna, Elsa, and another barbie doll, and wake her up by presenting to her the Prince. I did just that, getting the dolls to wake her up off of the carpeted floor, but she did her trademark “no, like this,” and showed me by kissing me on the nose, that she was expecting a kiss from Prince charming himself.

I smiled. Okay then.

I instructed her to stay there on the floor, then ran off to her room to get something. Back I came, with her dolls, and doing some pretend doll voices, the dolls then presented the Prince to a sleeping, Beauty. He leant down, gave her a kiss… she woke up…

And it was her Captain Feathersword doll.

The look of wild hilarity and fun spread across her face as she refused his ‘advances,’ and we doubled over on the floor cacking ourselves silly. I took the turn of being Sleeping Beauty then as she presented the feathery pirate to me, and then in my subsequent turns of finding a Prince for her, I presented to her my original 90s Ken Barbie, who honestly I thought was as good a Prince as any, but she said “yuck!” and on second thoughts and looks I realised that in his 90s bow-tie suit he looked more like a 40 year-old Dad figure than a suitor. Fair enough.

The last dude I found for her was also Wiggles themed, palm-sized Lachy doll from the latest group incarnation. “Here you go,” I mimicked the dolls, placing him on her face for a lip smacker.

“No Lachy, yuck!” she squealed, and we doubled over again in laughter, laughing more because we were there watching each other laugh and cry laughing. It was GOLD.

Tonight after all the cooking and cleaning and getting ready for the next day, I miraculously found some spare time. And I didn’t fill it with stuff on my to-do list. I turned to my private ‘me’ list, and sat at the table to read the Peninsula Kids magazine we had received at kinder that day.

Sure, I was reading articles written from fellow bloggers I knew and people who I had read about online. It was kinda like homework. But still, I was reading, I was engaging, and I was growing. And all the while a few metres away, Hubbie was creating his own game with baby girl – chasing her around the table, pretending to be distracted by something else and then running for her, until he would catch her in a bear hug, pull her into the couch, and then it would start all over again.

I sat there, reading amidst the laughter and the love, glad that she had had a full day of games, memories and love. I wasn’t in complete peace amidst the noise, but also somehow, I was.

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#719 Mini movie time

It was a full and fun day for baby girl and I, what with shopping, gift buying, babycinos and pink doughnuts to boot.

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But none of that compares to the quiet moment we had after.

While purchasing one of our many things for the day, being the highly-anticipated new JT album (!) baby girl decided she too had to have a new disc. I told her no, as she already has about 35 DVDs (probably no exaggeration), but then I had an idea. I had a Moana idea.

Every parent under the sun asks me about this movie. They say “oh, has she watched Moana yet?” and when I reply “no,” they say “it’s really good.”

Really good.

But I figure she doesn’t need to be inundated with all the great kids flicks at once. I even held off on introducing her to Frozen years ago for that very reason (also to escape that highly addictive ‘Let It Go’ number).

But today, as she was asking for something, and I figured she had been so good for kinder yesterday… I picked up the Moana DVD facing us, discounted too. I mean, I had already decided, right? But that only made the decision easier.

When we got home, I put it on for her. And then I did something I don’t do often… I sat down. I told her I’d only watch it with her for 5 minutes, and then I had to go do “Mummy jobs.”

But it was a Disney movie. Which meant of course, it sucked me right in.

5 minutes later and I was almost sobbing, with baby girl turning to me with concern and saying gently “it’s ok Mama, it’s ok… her Tato find her.”

Oh GAWD.

Time passed, and passed, and I was LOVING this movie.

It was really good.

After about 40 minutes of quality viewing time with my girl/my arse planted firmly on the carpet, I dragged myself off to go and prepare some dinner, or else all that would be on the menu was a whole lot of “How Far I’ll Go.”

Even so, I kept peeking around the corner to see the storyline’s progression, and then at the end when the food was all underway and getting going, I sat down to finish it off.

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And though it had been a full day, of walking around, laughing, spending money and eating out, the most precious time had been with my girl, watching Moana from the floor of her play area.

The best things in life are free… (or $15 as was the Moana DVD… 😉 )

#705 Cooling down at LEGOLAND

On day 2 of what to do when you are stuck in 35+ degree heat with no air con at home…

I actually wouldn’t have even thought to go to LEGOLAND today, if it weren’t for the extreme heat. So maybe I will be grateful for it…

Nah.

l’ll dedicate this one to the weird and wonderful things we saw at the ‘mini brick mansion’ instead.

I mean, it’s not like we had never planned on going to LEGOLAND… baby girl sure loves her Lego, and can’t wait ’til she turns 5 so she can accumulate even more Lego (I have to impose a pretend age ban, or else we’d be swimming in these pointy shaped blocks in our house).

The only LEGOLAND Discovery Centre in Australia is situated in Chadstone shopping centre, Melbourne. It’s a bit of a hefty entry price per single admission, of $32.50 a pop (sheesh!) but you do get access to a whole heap of free things. My thoughts are that with an annual pass costing you $75.00 a person, if you are bound to go at least twice a year, you’ve paid off your ticket, with the annual pass coming with freebies like special event invites and 10% off the Lego store too.

The website also advises that you can book and even schedule a time in advance to visit, so as to avoid the disappointment of possibly waiting if you do just ‘rock up’ like baby girl and I did today, hoping to just walk on in… having said that, we easily walked in, and still found it packed to the rafters inside with adults and kids, and it is school holidays too! Perhaps it gets even busier on weekends? Something to consider.

Upon entry we walked into a room where we were told to stand on a red dot and pose for a camera. I didn’t like this, only because I knew I would later be easily persuaded to buy the photos of myself and baby girl for a hefty price… which I did, for a hefty price! $45 to be exact!

But they were pretty cool, and showcased both of us in various Lego scenes, and to be honest we looked good, and if we didn’t I wouldn’t have bothered. Onwards.

The next room was the Lego ‘tour,’ which was really just a circular room with screens all around, with little cartoon people talking to us about how Legos are made, and all kind of fun statistics and info for kids… maybe older kids, but it was nothing to keep baby girl interested for very long.

The next door took us to a ride where we had to save the Lego princess, and we hopped on a car that took us around the dark in twisting corners, and where little Lego-shaped characters popped out, and then we pointed our play guns at screens and shot the bad guys. Of course, we saved the princess in the end 🙂 A cool ride, for both young and old, but if your littlie is scared of the dark, maybe it might be a little freaky with all the fake spiders and all.

The next room was MY personal favourite of the centre, the LEGOLAND of Melbourne city! Stay tuned for photos at the end of this post.

The final room was a huge mish-mash of everything:

  • There were various zones of Lego play where kids could get into the Lego-making themselves
  • Kids could also make Lego cars and then test them on awesome car tracks against other kids’ cars!
  • They could view human sized Lego
  • You could get involved in a Lego workshop
  • You could even create your own Lego to take home (today it was a starship from Star Wars)
  • There was the 3D Lego movie that ran every 30 minutes or so
  • Then there was the Merlin ride where you pedalled your way up and around into the sky (that was great fun!)
  • And last but not least there was the playground area, but note to all: kids aren’t allowed without socks!

And all of this with a café in the middle of the room and toilets nearby. All the activities were for free, the only things you had to pay for that were extra, were those cheeky photos they took of you at the beginning (of course you would pay for them), and food and drink from the café, plus anything from the Lego store of course, which was the place you exited from as you left the centre.

AMAZINGLY, we didn’t buy anything from the store, but that was purely because there was no Frozen or Little Mermaid or Disney themed Lego that was 4+ that baby girl didn’t have.

I would seriously consider getting an annual pass, but perhaps when baby girl is a bit older. Although we did most activities and went on both rides, she wasn’t interested in the movie, and the workshop might be a ‘next time’ task too.

But it was a great day all in all, and baby girl and I spend a good couple of hours in there, taking it all in (and me trying to get my money’s worth!)

Oh and it was cool. Hip-wise and temperature-wise. BONUS points.

Now for those awesome Lego Melbourne city pics…

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(Luna Park)

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(Baby girl – and Anna – checking out half of the MCG during cricket)

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(Racing the horses at Flemington Racecourse)

(Melbourne Exhibition Building and Shrine of Remembrance)

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(The stunning Arts Centre)

(Live music, and Hot Air Balloons!)

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(They even got the suburb I work in… why I never! Docklands)

And my favourite, most favourite of all…

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Melbourne’s beautiful beaches. Yep, we sure do ♥♥♥

And all was made that much sweeter and cooler, by the addition of some much-needed cold relief following such a huge day out…

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Hope your day was filled with as much fun and ice cream as ours was.

 

#671 My daughter’s nature, compared to ‘theirs’

I am going to say something a bit controversial.

I’m going to say it, after manic deliberation driving home tonight, the blood in my body bubbling like a hot rakija on the stove, promising to boil up and overflow at any moment if a close eye is not kept on it.

I’m also going to say it, after considerate thought, while I was sitting next to baby girl in bed just earlier, settling her, soothing her tired and frustrated face, and thinking back on the events of the day in complete calm and quiet.

I am not saying this carelessly.

I am not saying this casually.

I am not saying this with malice – I am only stating the cold, hard facts.

Some children, are absolute moles.

They are arrogant, rude, inconsiderate, bossy, and mean little MOLES.

And unfortunately baby girl was the brunt of their mole-ness today.

Every parent is biased, I know.

Every parent thinks their child is the best. The most smartest. The most beautiful. The most funniest. The most entertaining. The most amazing being in the entire world.

And you know what? Every parent is right.

Simultaneously, all our children can be a bit difficult at times, to put it mildly.

They can be obnoxious. Throw tantrums. Break things for attention. Yell and scream ’til they get what they want.

It’s really annoying, sure. But they are learning. And we are teaching them through this thing called ‘Life.’ They all have their moments, and they all test us parents in different ways.

Baby girl gets upset when she doesn’t get what she wants. She does get IT a lot of the time. But often I say no, just to prove a point, and I tell her above her crying protests

“life isn’t fair honey, get used to it.”

Baby girl will also be stubborn. Like I am not allowed to walk this way through the house, but that way. Just because.

I am not allowed to hold her Anna doll this way, but that way.

I can’t buckle her up in the car until she is seated and has properly prepared herself in it (another OCD contender anyone?)

She has these funny and weird routines and if we don’t comply, she will cross her arms, stamp her foot once, and say it a low cross tone “me very upset with you right now, hrmph.”

It is actually kind of totally adorable.

You know what is not adorable though? Yelling. Screaming. Snatching. Telling someone to go away. To not play with them. Telling someone they can’t join in. Screaming at them not to touch their toys. Teasing them. Making fun of them. Stirring them up. Belittling them.

Bullying them.

This is what baby girl endured today. All she wanted to do was play, and what she got in return was a big pile of mole-play.

And after all of that she still wanted to hug mole-child goodbye, and was refused it… and when asking if mole-child would visit her at our house, got a prompt “no.”

I can’t begin to describe the intense anger and frustration coupled with deep-seated emotion that ravaged loose inside of me when all this was happening. Baby girl was crying out, literally, for play, for friendship, for fun, and all she got was a whole lot of shit in return. She so much wanted to make a connection, and to see my happy and carefree girl so upset, frustrated, confused and sad, broke me up into a million pieces inside.

Without parenting, or telling off mole-child whose parents were absent, I did what I could only do… give a few choice words of my own – “that is not very nice, would you like it if someone did that to you?” – and told baby girl to “leave the rude kids alone.”

But I was furious. And later, thinking of the events that had transpired, it led me to one big realisation.

Baby girl, actually is, THE BEST.

She is an angel. Sure she is sometimes possessive of her toys. But she eventually shares, and loves playing with others happily for hours on end.

Sure she is a typical 4 year-old and wants things her way. But she will never yell at another, and would rather follow the other child’s game than stamp her foot down (kids are the exception!) and miss out on play.

Sure she sometimes plays up and deliberately goes against the grain just to grind you. But she has a kind, generous and compassionate heart, and just wants to get along.

She is not angry, mean, or rude. She is a friendly, happy-go-lucky child who just wants to engage, jump, laugh a lot and have fun.

When someone yells, she stands back in confusion. And tonight, so did I.

Because my daughter, is not a mole-child. And I am so grateful for that.