#552 The facial

I can easily refer to it as ‘the,’ rather than ‘a’ facial, since the duration between facials has been so long, I almost forgot WHAT IT WAS.

I think I had a series of treatments before I got married, you know, to get my face all ‘getting married ready.’

That was over 8 years ago.

I received a voucher for a beauty salon from my beautiful cousins a year ago for my birthday, and today I was finally able to redeem it, one day before it expired.

Actually, the fact that the salon is not even open tomorrow, means I actually got in at the last day.

There are so many excuses as to why it took me so long to get there, and furthermore, why I don’t do facials anymore: lack of time, attention elsewhere (more ‘important’ things), Motherhood, WIFE-hood, both a.k.a putting myself last, and the worst of it all, the guilt that I should be doing more worthy things, rather than splurging on myself.

All a bunch of bull.

As I lay there in the darkened room, moisturiser getting lathered and massaged into my face and neck and shoulders, I vowed to myself I had to do this more often. I had to put myself first, look after my own body and mind and wellbeing, and then when I did, I would come back to my family all –

Rejuvenated. Fresh. Alive. Ready to take on the world. And with a restored sense of calm.

And isn’t that the best way to be with your family? The best person you can be? I, and YOU, owe it not just to yourself, but to them.

So honestly, I need to get a facial every couple of months, for them. Good point, good point… 😉

#551 What he said no.2

“I just want you to know.” He held my hand tightly as I drove, and I looked at him. “If you are ever unhappy with anything I do or say, I want you to talk to me about it. I never want it to get to the stage where you want to leave, but you never spoke to me where I could help…”

It wasn’t the most romantic thing I’ve heard from Hubbie, but tears welled in my eyes. I needed to hear that for some reason, and I didn’t even know why at first.

It followed a really crappy morning. Whinge whinge whinge, moan moan moan, sook and cry and life is crappy. All from ME. I’d been having a crappy week, holidays and all, BIRTHDAY INCLUDED, and I just felt like giving up. It was nothing major, and I was well aware that there were more important things in life to actually worry about…

But I had gotten to the advanced stage where I just wanted to vent about everything, no matter how small or insignificant it was. Trying to start the day afresh, plant a smile on my face, Hope for the best and “make the most of it!” had fallen on Deaf Universe Ears, as day after day I had been disappointed in some way. Enough to really frustrate me.

Even for a glass half-full gal as myself, I had seriously had enough. There is only so much hanging on I can take

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before I say FUCK EVERYTHING. Screw it. No asterisks or exclamation marks to hide it either. *!

Of course, as the day wore on, I lightened up. Some things made me happy and not stress so much. But still as we were driving in the late afternoon, and the attention somehow drew to a couple who had since separated, he grew solemn, and gave me the above sweet words.

Why did I appreciate them? It’s because he was realistic… not about the possibility of our relationship not being – no, I don’t even want to entertain that fact. That is an idea so far from my/our reality, that the sky turning a permanent purple, UFOs landing on our roof, or a Money Tree literally growing up out of our yard, all seem more plausible than that very unattractive and sad, sad sad proposition.

He was realistic that life was hard. Relationships were hard. Marriage was hard. He was realistic and understanding that shit happened, issues would come up often, and WHEN they did, he wanted me to talk to him about them. Not necessarily about he and I. But about anything. Knowing he wouldn’t stick his head in the sand, tell me to forget about it, say I was crazy, or dismiss my genuine feelings, made me feel incredibly relieved.

He cared. He cared enough to put me, before us. And that meant that WHEN the shit-pile avalanche started its descent down the hill, he would be there in the middle of it, pushing it up and getting the brunt of it, helping me to run away from it all.

And then I would be waiting for him, with a hose. And water him off. Because we are in this occasional shit-storm of life together. So I said to him

“The same goes for me.”

The real Happily Ever After’s don’t end in the nicely dressed Prince and Princess heading off into the sunset into their white carriage and gold-chauffeured horses.

It’s a guy and a girl in trakkies, covered in poo, walking down the street. One of them has a hose, and they’re holding hands.

That’s real. That’s life. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Photo by Sebastian Pichler on Unsplash

 

#540 Her phrases

We are driving home from Spotlight. In the car, and it has just started to rain.

“Mama! Wipe wipe wipe!”

Baby girl wants me to put the wipers on. I flick the wand, and the wipers move across the window.

“Good job Mama.”

(!)

We are driving to another shop.

“Mama, one more toy, and finish.”

She says this ALL the time. Every time she says “one more toy, and finish,” it actually NEVER EVER EVER finishes. It’s the never-ending finishing toy story, which never actually finishes, unlike the movie, which DID.

I give her a look, trying not to smile. “Baby girl, don’t be cheeky.”

She cocks her head to the side, imitating my amused smile, and laughs. “Mama,” with the same tone I used on her.

(How do I win with this super-charming and cheeky girl?)

I am cleaning up after having made a cap and babycino for baby girl and I this afternoon. She takes the empty milk canister I have on the side, placing it in the sink.

“Be careful! The milk can drip.” I try to convince her, with my own hands full, to get her to leave the canister alone. She doesn’t.

She places the lid on top, in an act of ‘packing up,’ and then starts to walk away.

“Thank me Mama.”

She wants me to thank her.

“Thanks baby girl… not that I asked you in the first place,” I mutter.

(Sigh).

She has just finished brushing her teeth. We make a HUGE deal out of this, every single time.

“Great job honey! You did so well! You are a superstar!”

“No, a rock star.”

Geez! Where did that one come from?! ;-D

(LOL LOL LOL)

Sitting on her Dad’s lap, drinking her nightly milk. She is slipping off his lap, and repositions herself on him, resulting in extreme discomfort for him. He winces, but he is well-used to this wiggle worm by now.

“Ahh,” she says, taking the milk cup from me, now that she is more comfortable.
“Much much better.”

🙂

I write these things, not only because they make me happy, and grateful for these moments that display her growing humour, personality and maturity, but also as a snapshot into our life, into her life and world, and in particular the moments captured on August the 7th 2017.

It’s the reason why I write and document life so much. I want to remember, and for my children to one day read back, and go “wow… that happened? Wow.”

Life is precious, and life with a child is a wild adventure and bag of tricks that is almost necessary to note down… because they are memories to treasure forever.

#535 Pre-work cafe

A lot of times the photos I display on my SmikG blog as part of my Food Reviews, look something like this:

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And not often do people get to witness the beautifully imperfect behind-the-scenes pics, like this

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The above happened earlier today, a couple of hours before I headed into work. And as I sit here at my desk eating reheated food, I look back fondly, and am grateful for the wayward, spontaneous and cheeky hand that is my daughter’s, representative of all that is crazy, interesting and truly amazing about life.

And those imperfect moments, are actually… pretty damn flawless in my books.

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#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?!

#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.

#453 Photos

My sister always says, that it is so worth taking heaps of photos, for the memories that will come to you later as you look back on them.

She speaks with a lot of experience. She takes, HEAPS of photos.

She doesn’t have many photos of when she was a baby, and so I think she has spent the majority of her life, kind of making up for that fact, and making sure that her kids, will have tonnes of them.

I think I’ve kind of taken that from her. I too, love photos. Currently there are approximately, no exaggeration, 2000 of them waiting to be filed into photo albums at my less than likely leisure. I fell behind before baby girl was born, and thinking like the stupid parentless ‘know-it-all’ I was, that I would catch up while on maternity leave with her…

Yeah, right. Like that ever happened. 3 and a half years later and they’re still PILING UP.

But anyway. I love them, and in the most old school way – hard copy in a PHOTO ALBUM.

I’ve been doing heaps with photos lately, and it’s just reminded me how amazing and beautiful these snapshots into time can be.

In just over a week we’ll be celebrating my parents 50th wedding anniversary. We’re doing a few special things on the night, and one of them, to highlight their 5 decades together, is the photo collage I’m putting together, of one decade each per large cardboard sheet of paper, with as many photos as I can possibly muster crammed into all 5 sheets.

When I took my usb stick of anniversary photos over the years to the photo centre, there were 647 files.

647 photos.

I knew I had to scale that back, BIG TIME.

I told myself I’d only select 150…

then I got to 150 and said I’d select up to 200…

then I got to 200 and said 250 MAX.

Which is how I ended up at 255. Close enough.

Today when I took the developed photos to my sister’s place, for our little debrief over the anniversary party (who would sit where, what we would say, what would go where, what time that would occur, etc, etc), she flipped through the photos quickly, grinning and letting out “oh wow!”s, complimenting the broad selection, and happily going back in time to as far back as the late 60s, as she saw my parents journey again from start to current day.

Seeing the reaction on her face was great, and later at home as I trimmed the photos back, removing blank spaces and tightening it up so I could surely fit 50 photos per large page, I couldn’t help but pause and smile several times, observing my parents youthful looks, almost laughing out loud when my parents were too laughing in the photos, grinning with fondness at family photos through the decades, and just generally reminiscing with warmth in my heart.

I know, I sound like a hallmark card. But really, I loved it. I love photos. And I think the guests at the party, my parents’ family and friends, and my parents especially, will really enjoy the snapshot through the ages.

50 Golden Ages. 🙂