#452 First Mother’s Day celebration at kinder

Oh man. Another Phil Collins moment.

“I’ve been waiting for this moment, all my life.”

True story. Like I have literally been looking forward to the day that baby girl brings home artwork and painting, after artwork and painting, from her kinder days. Like, actually, the very first painting she did at kinder, Hubbie and I were so excited, we decided we would FRAME IT.

So it comes to reason that when I heard they were doing an afternoon tea in celebration of this Sunday’s upcoming Mother’s Day, well, I was in my element.

And so that afternoon happened, today. Upon arrival, I was first given a hand massage by baby girl (heart tearing open)

We then did a shared hand-painting exercise, where we painted each others hands in varying colours and pressed it onto some paper as a future keepsake (our hand size comparison – so darn cute!)

We shared in some scones and biscuits as a little mid-activity treat (because sugar makes everything better)

The kids ran around, before they sat down with us parents to hear a story of a Mummy, turning into a monster when her kids don’t listen to her (highly, highly appropriate)

The kids then sang an “I Love you Mum” song, and I nearly burst out into tears at baby girl’s actions of hugging and blowing a kiss to the song’s words (I was tickling the roof of my mouth like CRAZY here*)

And then finally we got goodie bags, which contained a pot plant, and a handmade card from our kids (finally, presents!)

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There was also the portrait our littlies drew of us, and can I just say ‘Picasso!’

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Totally, no. She is 3. Still, I will cherish those squirls on a round face as my humanly representation, for a LONG time.

And like she really knew what it was all about… at two moments during the book reading, baby girl left her spot on the floor with all the other kids, and came to sit on my lap, and gave me a deliberate, and distinct, KISS on the cheek, accompanied by a great big warm hug.

And just like she does so often, in every day of our lives, she stole my heart all over again.

My heart is all torn up today, in the absolute bestest way possible :):):) And tonight’s sunset is a perfect metaphor for its blushing state.

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(*To prevent yourself from crying, tickling the roof of your mouth with your tongue is said to keep you from bawling like a baby… does it work? I think I am always too busy trying to inconspicuously do it, that my mind immediately becomes preoccupied with being so-not-obvious, and in doing so I forget I’m an emotional wreck… so there’s your answer) 😉

 

 

#444 8 Years

(There’s something beautifully symmetrical about the above…)

Sure, last night we all went out as a family to celebrate, at a local and pretty nice restaurant. But tonight, this is how Hubbie and I spent our 8th wedding anniversary:

(Baby girl ordering us to hide, so she can ‘find’ us)

She runs out of the room squealing, pretend counting.

We huddle under the couch’s throw, wrapping it around and ensuring we are well covered, giggling as our bodies draw closer and we cheekily kiss and hug, knowing we are well out sight.

“Happy Anniversary bubs.”

“Happy Anniversary.”

“I love you.”

“I love you honey.”

Baby girl re-enters the room and excitedly pretends to look around, trying to ignore the fact that she knows where we are. Hubbie’s head pops out of the throw cover and he asks “where’s Mama?”

Minutes later and I am ‘found,’ and soon enough we are all under the covers, laughing and tickling and making memories. No fancy restaurant can match that, because that’s the most important seat in the house.

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#380 Baby girl’s understanding

She has been a true wonder today. As soon as we woke this morning, me letting her know gently that it was going to be a very, very quiet day because Mama was a bit unwell, she was just, cool.

She has been a star. Her understanding and unfussed attitude has made it so much easier for me on a day when I just want to curl up into a ball and remove myself from society.

She’s played with her kitchen play-set happily; spent time singing ‘Let It Go’ without demanding me as her audience; she has come forth for many well-meaning hugs and kisses to cheer me up; and most importantly, she has performed ‘Magic’ on my sickness countless times, hoping to bring back her Mum to life.

All with an adorable smile on her face.

And, the clincher? When I mentioned it was nap time only 20 minutes ago, rather than receive frustration, a uncooperative nature and repeated ‘no’s, she dutifully walked into her room with a little puppy doll she was going  to cuddle to sleep, and lay down.

And then she fell asleep, so easily.

It is the most profound relief, and gratitude, when your child works with you, when you are unwell.

And I am majorly grateful for it today.

 

#362 Her affectionate nature

I was initially going to write ‘her affection,’ but opted for the above title as I’d much rather this adorable characteristic remained in her forever and ever, rather than be a fleeting moment in time.

Baby girl’s tendency for hugs and kisses has been growing at a steady rate. I remember at a young age how much I craved the physical affection of my parents. And they wholeheartedly returned it, however they weren’t the kinds to really initiate it. It’s just how they were brought up, that’s all. And as I developed into a teen, my outward physical affection towards them waned away.

It returned in full force when I embarked upon my most bestest relationship of them all, that with Hubbie. And if I thought I was expressing myself there, well I was in for something else when our baby girl was brought into our world.

I most certainly initiate the affection with her.

And now that she is a bit older, a bit more understanding and aware of things, she has started to really amp up the affection. I think she is feeling it more when I am away at work, and so the days that follow are one big love-fest.

Just these last few days. She will kiss my whole face as she holds it between her hands: both my eyelids, my nose, my cheeks, my forehead… then she will give about 5-10 pointed kisses on one cheek, before giving me another 5-10 pointed kisses on the other.

She will climb up onto my lap and wrap her arms around me, pulling me in close.

She will randomly look at me all squinty eyes and go “ohhh!” leaning in so I can give her a hug.

And today as we walked into the shops, me reiterating the importance of holding hands in car parks as I gently squeezed her hand to make my point, she squeezed back, and then hugged my leg before giving it a kiss.

Oh man this girl. Seriously now. She is gonna break some hearts, majorly.

I am loving this stage. And unlike what happened when I was growing up, I hope that by returning the affection in full force, hers towards me/us, will never wane away. It will not be a stage.

I will eat her up while I am breathing.

#323 Post New Year’s Countdown with Best Friends

Saturday January 12, 2017.

It is almost 10pm. On the dot. Coincidentally.

Music is BLARING. (Sia).

Scene? Best Man and Fam’s house.

The kids have just finished going through a box of sparklers. They have been looking forward to lighting them up ALL night.

Party atmosphere is turned ON.

Suddenly, someone mentions that it feels like New Year’s Eve. We’ve spent it together before, but not the one that just passed.

Hubbie decides a countdown. And the older kids join in.

“10, 9, 8” (Just a few of them)

“7, 6, 5” (Some adults join in)

“4, 3, 2, 1” (We’re all chanting now)

“Happy New Year!”

Everyone yells and jumps around. Out on the alfresco part of the yard, they all begin walking to one another with kisses and hugs, wishing each other a Happy New Year. They do it with love and happiness, yet so seriously, like it is REALLY Happy New Year.

Even the kids start going around and shaking hands with each other. Like we are talking two 3 year olds, a 7 and a 9 year old.

When they come to me to kiss me Happy New Year, I am laughing so hard I can barely reciprocate. “What are the neighbours going to think?”

10pm on Jan 12 it’s New Year’s?

I reciprocate the kisses and hugs, still laughing.

“It actually feels like New Year’s!” Someone exclaims.

THIS IS SOME OF THE RANDOM SHIT YOU DO WITH YOUR BEST FRIENDS.

And it totally rocks.

What makes it more awesome is our kids are in on the act too.

I am so happy, and grateful for these memorable moments. 🙂

 

#320 3 generations on the bed

A continuation of an earlier post.

Last night Mum stayed with my sister during Dad’s first overnight hospital stay.

Tonight, it was our turn.

We had already passed on our “sweet dreams” and well wishes for the night to her, with baby girl repeatedly confirming that Baka, was indeed sleeping next door to her, and followed that with several hugs and kisses.

I was tidying around the house and went into baby girl’s room when I heard my Mum’s loud laughter. I moved around the room, and it happened again. I grinned. “You ok in there?”

She had done her bid: she had caught my attention.

I went into the dimly lit room and sat on the bed with her as she proceeded to tell me some things that had been on her mind, kind of funny, kind of not, but nonetheless I listened and lended her my ear.

Baby girl soon realised I was missing and came charging into the room. She disappeared during our conversation to bring along some Wiggles figurines to the party, and soon, there were 3 generations on the bed… alongside Emma, Lachy, Simon and Anthony of course. Talking to my Mum like that reminded me of our conversations of old, when I would have 3 hour D&Ms with her on a Saturday morning as a teen, sitting across from each other at our old round kitchen table.

I smiled with much content, as baby girl repeatedly hugged her Baka, watching their reflection in the opposite dresser mirror, while my Mum casually returned the embraces and kissed her while not missing or pausing for a forgotten word. When my Mum laughed, so did baby girl, mimicking her characteristic tone.

I was very happy. It is lovely indeed, when you find precious and beautiful moments amidst such uncertainty. It was heart-warming to see such love between them, and seeing how they related to one another, along with the physical resemblance, makes it all the more appropriate that baby girl is her namesake 🙂

 

 

#314 On my lap

As a first time Mum to an exceptionally cheeky, adorably adventurous, kind-hearted soul and constantly surprising 3 year old, there have been things that I’ve had to say goodbye to along the way.

Some sad, and some… welcoming.

Night time wake-ups. Those are gone (though you can never be too sure with children). But I mean specifically, those night-time calls that can happen up to 4 times a night, and leave you trying to put a baby back to sleep for an hour each time, leaving you with all of 3 hours of sleep a night – if you’re lucky.

Welcome!

Feeding by hand… those are mostly gone. She eats on her own, and it’s just adorable that she waits patiently until her spoonful of cereal drips into the bowl before she takes a bite, or how she MUST have her hands clean as she eats something, wiping constantly with her scrunched up napkin between bites.

Welcome!

Teething. Crying, gnawing, drooling, irritability, restlessness.

So, so welcome!

And then there are things that I thought were welcome, but really, make me a little sad and nostalgic when I think of them.

Take breastfeeding for example. I devoted 13 months to it. Happily. Yet it was something I was looking forward to seeing the end of in some ways… but as the time drew closer, I felt myself getting sad, feeling like I was going to suddenly lose a tremendous bond with her. I weaned her slowly, and did such a good job that the day after the last feed, she didn’t react in any certain way of longing, and kept on with her solid foods and regular bottled milk.

I was quite emotional. I’ve developed bonds with her in other ways, but knowing that was the last time, at the time, was very hard for me.

Rocking her to sleep. This one quite literally broke my back. Then I discovered I could just as easily sit in a chair with her in my arms, and put her down once she was asleep. This made my life easier, and then only when I took it further, and sat next to her as she fell asleep, did I realise how beautiful it was to hold her in my arms AT ALL.

This made me a little sad.

Nightmares. Having her cry in such sadness in the middle of the night, for no reason other than she needed me, made me feel like ‘oh geez, again.’ It didn’t happen too much, but it did seem to happen as her night time wake-ups grew less frequent, which actually made me start to cherish these nightmares, as horrible as they were for her. I’d sit in the big chair in her room and envelope her in a big hug, and hold her tight as she fell asleep, feeling so blessed and loved and lucky that I was the one she wanted, the one she needed, the one who could soothe her fears.

They stopped, and I kind of miss them.

She used to sit on my lap while she drank her bottled milk. But she grew independent and able to hold the cup on her own, and then discovered she could be a ‘big girl’ and sit beside me.

When she realised that, I saw that I was losing yet another thing. I tried to encourage her on my lap a few times more, but she had found freedom on the couch. That made me sad.

Lately though, we’ve been mucking around in a different way. Sometimes she will deliberately lie across my lap, wanting me to rock her back and forth like a baby, with my sing-song “na na, na na,” as if I’m putting her to sleep. I ask if she’s my baby, and she nods, smiling. I cuddle and kiss her like this, cherishing the fact that she wants to lie on my lap at all and be devoured by my kisses.

However surprisingly, she’s taken it a step further in the last week. During our bedtime read, she’s decided to sit on my lap while we read her book, instead of being beside me. She gets up, taking her book with her, and then gets comfortable on my lap before nuzzling her head against my neck, to which I heap kisses and hugs all over her.

I’ll take all the kisses, and I’ll take all the hugs. When I think of what I thought I lost, I grow very appreciative, and realise that I haven’t lost anything at all.

Besides her, I’m always winning.