#439 Memories from my past

Today I was at my parents house, pointedly going through the wardrobe of my old room, looking for… ‘something.’

In my search though, I found LOTS OF THINGS.

Some made me smile. Some made me proud. Some I took home.

These items included:

·   an old diary from 2004 (it made me smile – damn my writing was perfect then!)

·   a water bottle and water bottle warmer (to take home – you never know when you need one)

·   old Uni essays from when I took ‘Classic Hollywood’ (that made me proud when I read bits and observed the score, and the teacher’s comments)

·   a photo scrapbook my bestie put together and gave me the day of my wedding day (that made me smile, AND I took it home!)

·   a Sex and the City make-up case that contained all 6 season DVDs, back when I bought the box set over a decade ago! (that I took home – I already have the DVDs with me, may as well complete the collection)

·   also a Sex and the City board game that I have never played (that I took with me of course, due to the former!)

and then, I found the ‘something’ I had been searching for:

Angel memorabilia – in the way of Angel magazines from 2004.

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🙂

Going through memory lane was a blast, and I will do it again and go through more of my old ‘things,’ when I unpack more boxes here at home.

Yes, I am still unpacking, 8 months on. Not many to go, but I need to sort nonetheless.

And the reason for my Angel memorabilia search? I am very confident that tomorrow’s gratitude post will reveal ALL the answers…

;););)

 

#408 Meeting Dora

I was about 5 or 6 when my sister took me to go and meet Mickey and Minnie Mouse. It was the late 80s, and back then, it was a BIG DEAL. The photo is hanging out somewhere in my parents house, but I remember the awe of it all, and the humongous queues to get a photo taken with them. It was really, really momentous.

Apart from that, that is my only brush with kiddie fame. And I was thinking today, what a difference a few decades make.

Back then, Minnies and Mickeys only ventured out of Disneyland, like once in a blue moon. And if you met them, that was like the holy grail, the Christmas of Christmases, the highlight of your sweet, sweet childhood.

Nowadays though? Baby girl has been to 4 Wiggles concerts, been in close contact with Lah Lah’s band and posed with the accordion player, had photos with both Bananas in Pyjamas, Upsy Daisy and Iggle Piggle from In The Night Garden, and today, the latest addition.

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And she is only 3 and a half.

She met Dora at Westfield Southland today, and it was amazing. I mean, for her. I watched proudly as she confidently walked up to the top of the stage steps, to wait her turn for a meet ‘n’ greet, and then strode purposefully towards one of her idols for a big all-encompassing hug and photo op.

When I saw the size of Dora, a little part of me went ‘Yikes.’ I mean, this was a super-sized Dora! I was concerned baby girl would cower slightly and need strong nudging before hesitantly making her way towards her.

But nope. This seasoned professional, who has already seen so much, and so many of her favourite entertainers, did me so, so proud.

And the best bit? The novelty HASN’T worn off. She is still as excited and thrilled seeing Dora today, as she was 2 and a half years ago when she went up to Iggle Piggle and Upsy Daisy in the shopping centre and happily gave them warm hugs.

It is still sweet. And I will encourage that sense of wonder and innocence, of youthful exuberance and gratitude in her, for as long as I live.

#374 Reclaiming the past with Besties

Tonight, Bestie and her Hubbex came over to visit us in our new ‘hood.

It was a pretty rad night.

We have a pretty awesome history, us 4. I often wonder if the looks we get from other ‘friends’ are that of jealousy: I mean, bestie and I are of course, LONG-TIME besties, and when we get together, our Hubbies become equally as tight and crazy as us.

We were an integral part of their bridal party when they got married, which was right before I got pregnant with baby girl. It was an amazing day, and so special to be sharing it with them both, in such a close and intimate way.

But that was not the beginning, and it sure as hell won’t be the end. No. Our times together have many prior years and years on their wedding day… from after our high school years and through all of our twenties, birthdays and events, days out, dinner, catch-ups and plenty of laughter here, there and EVERYWHERE. I’m talking Hubbie and Hubbex jumping out of our semi-moving car after midnight singing “How Bizarre” at the top of their lungs on a Saturday night. I’m talking funny dress-ups, and stupid faces to the point that when we look back on them now, we laugh ourselves so silly that we do unintentional ab crunches from our laughter, our breath soundless and eyes all screwed up from the mad laughter that we are expressing.

I’m talking wine, I’m talking shots, and I’m talking plenty of D&Ms in-between. When I think of our long-standing history together, and think back through all of those years, I then realise how varied, vast and deep our friendship and experiences with one another are.

And generally speaking, I am proud of the maturity I’ve developed in response to the friendships and relationships in my life. Nothing remains static, stagnant. Things are ever-changing, and so too do many friendships take on a temporary ‘on hold’ spell, while life takes over, other things become more of a priority, and you move in different directions.

I love that quote, that says something like you know you have a true friend when you don’t always see each other, but when you get together it’s like no time has passed. Nothing is truer for this awesome-foursome.

Although all our lives are extremely busy, and we all have differing passions and interests and jobs that keep us entertained and out of trouble, we still make the time for each other, when we can. And tonight, while eating and drinking, listening to a whole variety of musicians and getting extremely excited over them, talking the deep philosophy of Beyoncé’s image, pruning roses, allowing baby girl to do multiple renditions of Let it Go, turning our staircase into ‘ice’ as she stamped down on the landing, and shooing off cats, we had a smashing time.

We have matured, we are older, and we have more responsibility present in our lives… but it is still us. And US, has still got IT.

Take care of your true friends, because it takes a long time to gain an ‘old friend.’ They are precious and much sought after.

After tonight, I think our future together looks just as happy/funny/silly/meaningful/profound/bright, as ever 🙂

 

#366 Baby girl slow-dancing with my parents

It’s a sight for sore eyes. It made me smile and my heart almost burst with emotion. The fact of dancing with my parents is even something I wrote about a long time ago, but back then it was my memory of ‘me’ dancing with my parents, when I was only a young girl of about 8.

Tonight it was baby girl’s turn.

She took their hands, standing between them as they swayed back and forth in unison, she looking up at them, crumbs at the sides of her lips turning up as she smiled.

“Do you want to dance with Mum and Dad, or Baka and Deda?” I ask as Hubbie and I sway together nearby.

I wonder what my parents think. Do they naturally think of me, of my sister, of raising us and our childhoods.. do they remember parties, events, social gatherings, happy times, and beautiful moments? Do they think this more so because of the striking resemblance of baby girl to us?

“No,” baby girl shakes her head. She is staying put with them.

I smile. That’s the way it ought to be. Hubbie and I keep swirling around, and each time I turn towards them, my heart thuds a bit more…

#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.

#225 Falling into place – Kinder

I only put in the late application last night. It had been the first kinder we had visited at our Sea change destination, yet it had made an impact on us – the teachers were warm and friendly, the room was filled with kid-fuelled, inventive and funny nik-naks, and I immediately felt like baby girl would love it there.

However, I felt the need to research some more – surely the first kinder we visited wouldn’t be the right one straight off the bat, could it? I had to be sure.

A few drive-by inspections, and another kinder visit yesterday, told me that often you don’t need to do any further research. Sometimes you should just go with your gut, regardless of what else is out there. We spoke to a lovely lady from another kinder who said that spots were tough to come by at this stage of the game, so I took her kindly advice and applied for the first kinder we had seen.

A phone call this afternoon: baby girl was offered a spot. I happily accepted, then got off the phone to jump up and down with baby girl telling her she was going to be painting to her hearts content next year. Her cheeks were rosy and bright, from being outside all day – in my parents yard, and at the park I had frequented so much as a child. The thought of painting endlessly thrilled her.

Later during her nap, as I was being appreciative of how easy it had been in the kindergarten application process, a song came into my head. As I hung her clothes to dry on the inside clothes rack, I smiled as the words filtered through:

Que Sera, Sera

Whatever will be, will be

The future’s not ours to see

Que Sera, Sera

I used to find a strong affinity with the song as a child. Dreaming, imagining, wondering what my future would hold. I would hum the words to myself as I played in the park, thinking deep thoughts that I’m not sure a normal 9 year old would think.

Who would I marry?

What would I become?

How would my children be like?

What would I do?

Being a naturally inquisitive person, the questions posed in the song (will I be famous, will I be rich, here’s what she said to me) reflected my own curiosities and doubts, fears and wonders over life and what would come in the future. But in the end, no matter how much I wanted to know, anything, the words of the song rang truer still:

The future’s not ours to see.

Funny how things work out? Today as I remembered the lyrics:

Now I have children of my own,

They ask their mother, what will they be?

As we are on the verge of so many life-changes, with moving house, moving lifestyle, and now our baby girl going to start kindergarten next year, I wonder what her questions will be? What will I tell her? Will I be honest, or will I put on my rose-coloured glasses and paint the world a vibrant rainbow?

I’ve always swayed heavily between two lines of thinking, two ways that are directly opposite one another and yet BOTH that I believe to be true.

  1. There are things that are ‘meant to be’ in life
  2. We control our actions and our futures

They are highly contradictory thoughts, and yet some things in our life I believe we can’t escape, yet simultaneously I believe we can do what we want to do…

I’ve always imagined having a beach house, but it was always just a silly fantasy, wishful thinking. I never really put any kind of plan or action into it, ’til the start of this year. And in very little time, we made a purchase, and are now moving.

So did we make that happen, or was that meant to happen?

All my beach house, silly references throughout life… was that me attracting the beach house to ourselves the whole time?

Or was that meant to be, and the Universe was throwing me snippets of our future forecast before it happened?

I still don’t know, and I don’t know what I’ll be telling baby girl in years to come. I think I’ll be realistic, yet I’ll inject a good dose of romanticism and wishful thinking, because you know, as I say to her:

Reach high for the stars, and follow your dreams. You can achieve whatever you wish for.

I honestly don’t think that that line of thinking could harm anyone.

I am grateful that so far, things are going smoothly, and this kindergarten process has gotten off without a hitch… almost like it was meant to be.

But, ‘whatever will be, will be.’

 

 

#213 3 generations at ‘the’ park

As I looked into her eyes, at her darling face, it was a picture I wanted to engrain in me until the end of time, like so many other times before…

I read a really sweet story online a while back, where a woman had a photograph of her first day of school at her parents house, and fast forward 20 or so years later, there was a photo now of her own daughter, looking similar to how she did, in the same house, and even wearing the same clothes, as she was going to be attending the same school as her mother did! What deja vu those grandparents would have had, looking at their sweet little granddaughter get ready for her first day of school, looking like a replica of their own daughter, like so many years ago.

I often have this thought, and I know Hubbie does too, with baby girl in reference to my Mum. Many people say she looks like me, but there are also many who think quite specifically, that she looks like my Mum – as I do too. And because of the striking similarity, I wonder how it must be like for my Mum at times, when she’s looking down at baby girl, playing, smiling, talking to her, and whether she gets lost in the moment and suddenly sees me, 30 years earlier (I was going to say 20 years but then I realised I was dreaming).

I don’t mean for it to sound self-obsessed, but my Mum has even admitted to it, saying sometimes she has to check herself from saying my name instead of baby girl’s. And because my parents are still at the same address, living in the same childhood home I knew all my young life, I know that a lot of those old memories must come forth in the light of new ones taking place.

Today after visiting my parents, we decided to spontaneously go to the park. You can be sudden in your park choice there, because the park is next door to my parents’ house. It is super convenient as a child, and super convenient when you have a child. We ran over, my Mum following, and we walked, played and ran around the playground.

Baby girl wanted to go in the swing, and I strapped her in. After pushing her a few times, I jumped into the adult swing beside her, and lined up my swing so that we were moving together, side by side.

And it was then. Then that I looked into her bright, smiling face. The wind was pushing strands of her hair around her face, and the sun was bright behind the clouds, making her squint slightly. Her smile was wide, so happy, so content, as we moved back and forth together. She was so thrilled to be swinging there with me. And there was nowhere in the world that I would have rather been. I was still cool yet angelic in her eyes. She was still my baby girl. It was a truly perfect moment.

I became aware of my Mum then, pacing slowly through the park. She was at a distance, and I remembered with a jolt, how I used to swing there. Sure, back then it was a totally different swing. The playground was wooden then, now it was metal. Back then the playground consisted of some swings, a slide, and a see saw that got burnt down one New Year’s Eve. Now the 21st century renovated park had walkways in between slides, climbing ladders and challenging chains, play-pretend steering wheels and rotating cubes for littlies to discover, and of course, the swings, amongst other park re-incarnations.

I was still at the park I grew up in… only now I wasn’t swinging alongside 1 of my 3 besties at the time. This time, this day, I was beside my baby girl. Mum was there, looking at two of her girls. And as 3 generations occupied the space, I couldn’t help but think how grateful I was for the moment, and how truly, life certainly goes around.

In the cycle of life.