#1426 The city trip

We easily could have had a crap day.

We had a few difficult starts that could have turned us sour.

Like the train station parking.

There wasn’t any.

As it was we couldn’t take our regular line into the city because there were replacement buses at certain stops…

And if you have ever had to take a replacement bus in, you will understand why we never ever want to take a replacement bus EVER AGAIN.

So we tried to jump on another train line.

But every car park was full.

We were on holiday time… but the rest of the world was not.

It was a Friday you see. Business hours applied.

We went to one station, couldn’t find parking, before driving up to the next one trying to get lucky.

We did this at three stations before I said “let’s just drive in.”

I remembered the car park I’d gone to with baby girl when we had our Andy show for the last school holidays.

And we just happened to take the scenic route there.

Boy did it bring back memories.

We were driving along Beach Rd in St Kilda, and I was looking at the palm trees, at the houses facing the water…

AND IT HIT ME.

I remembered going there with Hubbie way before baby girl was around, and how we’d look up at the houses and admire them saying “imagine living here by the beach? Imagine that?”

Well we didn’t live by that beach, but now we lived close to a beach.

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All of a sudden our unplanned drive in was becoming a whole lot more.

We arrived at our car parking destination about 2 hours from when we set off. All the pausing and going from one station to the next and then looking for parking had taken ages.

We could have been cranky. We could have been pissed. Instead we stepped out of the old building, so known to us, and went ‘ahhh’ as the humidity of the day hit us and we spied THAT familiar street.

Lygon street. Our old stomping ground.

Oh wow. We were walking and telling baby girl everything. “Mummy and Daddy used to come here all the time… we used to go there… then we would go there… we’ve been there… look that’s changed!”

It was amazing as all the feelings came flooding back. It was a place that at one time in our life we frequented like twice a week… then it changed to once. LOL. We went there so much the trip there was permanently engrained in our minds. The twists and turns of the street, the best parking spots, and who did the best pasta and steak.

(Not necessarily from the pricey side, and if you know Lygon street you know which side of the street that is 😉 )

We stopped to eat lunch at a place we had before, and looking up and down at the greenery on either side of us, I grew misty-eyed.

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I had a revelation.

I even said it aloud: “I could see myself living here.”

Hubbe was shocked. It was a big thing for me to say that. Me, SmikG, so rapt with the beachside that I couldn’t imagine anywhere else.

I clarified… “I love where we live… but one day, maybe in 20 years, I could imagine living here.”

The memories. Oh the MEMORIES! Even sitting at that table, I was reminded that we had sat at that very café and at that very table and had a coffee, right before going on a little trip together pre-baby girl… I reminded Hubbie and he said “Yes, I remember!”

“Where were we going again?”

After throwing out some names which weren’t right, he said it was at a spot on the Peninsula.

FACE PALM. Where we live NOW.

The symmetry was freaking me out.

Lygon Street made me feel right at home. From the bear-shaped pizza for baby girl and the handmade gnocchi for me that melted in my mouth, I was in heaven. I’ve always said I was Italian in another life. I am more than confident of it after today.

We shared a coffee after our tram trek into the city-centre, where I had the most delicious and iconic Melbourne themed chocolate…

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Before we went to where we had planned to all along.

A children’s theatre show.

It was Room on the Broom, a production based off the iconic Australian children’s book. It was a present to baby girl for Christmas after we saw how enthralled in the book she was last year… and so that was the point of our whole trek in.

We did so much before that to get there, and it had been an adventure.

The show in itself was another great adventure.

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But then like so many times before, shit hit the fan.

Baby girl wanted merchandise. A tiny $40 stuffed toy witch, or a $25 stuffed toy cat.

I shouldn’t even mention the money. The money doesn’t matter. It was the principle.

She has LOADS of stuffed toys. Do you think she plays with them?

Noooooooooooooooooooooo.

She started the hysterics. The tantrum built. Cries and shrieks. “No I want it!” Stamping of the foot. It is almost hilarious if it ISN’T happening to you.

We’d done so much to get there. Spent so much. Travelled so far.

And now THIS.

I looked outside the open doors as she cried behind us. People crowded through the foyer, some looking over and others dealing with their own demanding brood.

I could see it – gone was the humidity that had enveloped me during my delicious Pomodoro gnocchi as I sweated it out at 1pm…

Because now at 4pm, it was windy and raining and people were getting drenched outside.

I put my foot down figuratively, told her “NO!” and stomped outside.

And instead of –

“But how the witch wailed

And how the cat spat

When the wind blew so widely

It blew off the hat.” – 

It was –

“How baby girl wailed 

And how her Mum spat

As the wind blew so widely

and her Mum yelled ‘that’s that!'”

LOL.

She cried as we pulled her along through the rain, pelting down on us as we ran towards our tram stop.

“You don’t need another stuffed toy!”

“Yes I do!”

“No you don’t!”

“Yes I do!”

“No you don’t!”

And as we ran, our feet sploshing through puddles and water sinking through our sandals, our arguing turned into banter, and the water on her face was suddenly from the rain, not her tears, as baby girl started to laugh.

“Yes I do!”

We got some much appreciated shelter from a woman holding an umbrella as we waited to cross the road, and within moments, all was well again.

The wild weather could have thrown us off.

The tantrum, the crying and yelling could have put us in a real sour mood.

But it didn’t.

And all of a sudden, we were full circle in our feelings again. 🙂

It was one of those weird days where it was a little bit of everything, but mostly a lot of fun and crazy.

We didn’t let anything unexpected throw us off our main task of having fun, whether it was a long drive, no parking, wild weather or a demanding 6 year old…

Our task was to make memories, with the added bonus of reminiscing past memories.

It was a happy day. ♥

 

 

 

 

#1405 And, here we are

The journey starts with school tours, hope and anticipation

And, here we are.

You cross your fingers and fill in the forms

And, here we are.

 

Iron on name labels and school lunches

And, here we are.

Nervous smiles and a heart full of dreams – theirs AND ours

And, here we are.

 

There are good days, full of playground fun and new friends

And, here we are.

There are days where you make a meeting with the teacher

And, here we are.

 

There are mornings when they do all their chores!

And, here we are.

And then there are those where you both cry before walking out the front door

And, here we are.

 

On cold mornings you count down to school holidays

And, here we are.

On sunshine-y days you count down to school holidays

And, here we are.

 

You do their hair 17 different ways

And, here we are.

You make their lunchbox 84 different ways… longing for a break

And, here we are.

 

New friends and play dates

And, here we are.

Birthday parties and lollies galore

And, here we are.

 

Colourful posters and a million artworks

And, here we are.

Scratches all over their arms and legs

And, here we are.

 

Grumpy moody tired children

And, here we are.

Grumpy moody tired parents

And, here we are.

 

They learn so much and grow even more

And, here we are.

But all things, eventually come to an end…

And, here we are.

 

I sat in the car this morning, looked back at baby girl and said –

“And, here we are!”

And as I walked her to school for the last time of her prep days,

I felt myself get choked up, emotional and teary.

 

And I thought, just like that.

Here we are.

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#1404 My mini Angel

I plopped down on the couch after school pick up this afternoon, tired, uninspired and still feeling ‘ugh.’

There is no worse feeling than feeling – ‘UGH.’

I channel surfed. I soon, amazingly, saw that an episode of Angel was to be starting shortly.

Angel? What, MY Angel? I’ve said it so many times before but I’ll say it again: when you see a show on TV that you have in your DVD collection, for some reason there is an intense urge to WATCH IT IMMEDIAELY ON TV…. even as like I said, you can watch it on demand whenever you like…

Because you have your own copy.

But as always, I started to watch. I had to do dinner…

But, stuff that. I kept on watching.

Baby girl happened across a fight scene, and I tried to quickly change the channel – not so much for the violence, it was more about these kinds of faces –

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Vampire faces.

She was onto me though, and asked to watch it, but I said it was a grown up show that Mummy used to watch and tried to steer her away.

However she came in again towards the last 10 minutes… and this time I went ‘stuff it.’

(I won parenting today).

I warned her though! I said “I don’t want you having nightmares!”

“You can leave if you get scared.”

“You know this is all pretend, it’s pretend okay?”

She excitedly sat next to me and got comfy in the couch, and so I began the Angel world-building…

“That’s a bad guy. Don’t worry Angel is trying to kill him. He’s bad. He’s a vampire.”

“Angel is a vampire too, but he’s a good vampire.”

“Honestly don’t worry about that guy. He’s bad.”

“That’s how vampires die… don’t freak out! It’s just dust.”

… and so her introduction to Angel was born. ♥

 

#1398 The holiday countdown

Today I counted:

5 more school days for baby girl…

And 10 more work days for Hubbie…

Until HOLIDAYS. 

As for me? Being currently unemployed means I am on permanent holiday… kind of.

Because we all know, the role of…

Mum

Wife

Chef

Driver

Nurse

Grocery shoper

Meal planner

Activity organiser

Buyer of all gifts EVER

Bill payer

Gardener

Cat scratcher

Bird singer

Answerer to all questions

Dishwasher

Cleaner

Human washing machine

General fixer-upperer

Bandaid applier

Garbage maintenance

Nagger (🤨)

Meteorologist

Decorator

Expert negotiator

Dresser

Photographer

Memory maker

Creative fibber

Multi-tasker…

Means I am on call 24/7… No matter where I am, who I’m with, whatever I’m doing, sick or healthy, working or not working, on holiday or not on holiday…

For the rest of FOREVER.

(Oh, I lied. I get an inch when I’m sick). 📏

It may sound like I’m complaining but actually I’m not. I can’t wait ’til we’re on holiday together and I’m the only one ‘on call’… 😉

 

 

#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 the special. 😉

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 😉

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.  ♥

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. 

 

#1384 The best day for a kids party

Parents, HOLD YOUR HORSES.

I have now discovered the best day and time of week to hold a kids birthday party.

I know, because I went to one myself… this afternoon.

Friday afternoon. ;););)

At first when I got the invite I was like “Friday? Okay…”

But then the idea grew on me. Sure it was soon after they finished school. Sure, it meant we had to quickly change/snack/get ready before said-birthday party.

And sure, all the fairy bread/lollies/cake/sugar they ingested meant they would have no kind of normal dinner at all when they got home later…

But it is Friday after all peeps.

You know why a Friday afternoon birthday party is so good?

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Kids are already in the swing of it. Sure it’s the end of the week, but starting it so soon after the school day has done means that they just keep going on and on and on.

Don’t worry that they can’t keep going. They will keep going for cake alright.

Then, they come home pooped, high as a kite… not on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, in effect either ruining the rest of the day/weekend and setting themselves for a massive sugar downer as they soon start the school week again…

No. They come home on a Friday evening, RUINED, and then…

Sleep it off.

And then the weekend begins the next morning.

Brilliant.

Kids are happy and have a full weekend. Parents are even more happy as they don’t need to sacrifice their precious and limited weekend time to drive their kids to a party, because we all know once they come home they are manic from high-energy games, candy and madness, meaning they will do their own thing and be quite frankly, a nightmare.

But this all gets slept away after a Friday afternoon.

(I’m not saying I’m going to do this for baby girl but I still think it’s fantastic).

😉

#1383 The (no) friend game

It’s not pleasant as a parent to hear that your child hasn’t had the best day.

Worse still, when they say “I wanted to play with them and they wouldn’t let me.”

It still stings to write and think about, and this is a story in hindsight.

But it happened, and it happens, and unfortunately it’s one of those things that will continue to happen, for almost all kids at one time or another in their schooling life.

Baby girl told me the above yesterday, and it ate me up WHOLE. I feel so intrinsically connected to her that I myself was slighted by the fact that some girls hadn’t let her play with them, and she’d had to succumb to playing on her own.

Hubbie told me what he always tells me: “it’s how kids are. They can be shitty.”

Yeah, I get it. It doesn’t mean that it hurts any less.

Seriously, it is so much harder for the parents. Kids are fairly resilient. Although baby girl pointedly told me what happened, it didn’t seem to affect her mood or disposition, and I had to remember that out of all the days of the year she had been at school so far, she had said something like the above, only a handful of times.

So, where is my gratitude? Well today she told me she played hide and seek, tag, and red light green light with half her class. I was grateful to hear she had a good day, grateful that she had friends to play with, and grateful that, most of the time, she is a lot tougher than me. ♥