#1433 Home-grown cherry tomatoes

As if I couldn’t find yet another reason why I love going to my parents’ house time and time again.

Their backyard is the place to be. No matter what the season, it is a beautiful green abode of relaxation, escape, shade, dreaming, and also…

Food source.

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They have this vine of cherry tomatoes just casually scaling up one side of the fence. Before I knew what was happening my Mum was gathering bunch after bunch for me, and I was like “WOAH!”

They look delish!

Can’t wait to pop them onto one of my home-made pizzas with some super fresh mozzarella… DROOL.

#1410 Different tree, same love

The tree we used to put presents underneath when I was growing up was much bigger.

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It was a lot bigger than this tree. After I got married and moved out my parents downgraded to a smaller one, what with having no more kids in the house.

Despite the size, the love is still the same.

If anything, it has grown. Love has grown. Family has grown. Memories have grown. I am so grateful to have spent the day with loved ones, doing the best thing possible I can think of…

Which is sitting around a table in my parents backyard, with those that I love, relaxing in the shade and sun, music coming out of the garage stereo as we add to our memory bank and just chill and talk and eat and chill and drink and chill.

And talk.

And love.

Merry Christmas. β€πŸŽ„

#1406 The Christmas carols

My first intention for tonight was to head on down to the local carols in the park for some festive cheer and fun.

‘Twas not to be. Hubbie was tired from work and not ‘feeling it.’

We settled in for a night of carols on TV instead – if I couldn’t have them in person I had to have them someway, right?

“Don’t they do those on Christmas Eve?” Hubbie asked me.

Automatically I responded –

“Channel 7 do Carols in the Domain the Saturday before Christmas, in Sydney… Channel 9 do Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve from Melbourne.”

BAM! Just like that. All Christmas worded-up and everything.

Well I have been watching them all my life, I SHOULD KNOW.

Knowing the Wiggles were on in the first part of the night, we all sat down while baby girl asked repeatedly when they were going to be on.

She totally made up for it when they did arrive on screen, and she danced along to them while we watched her, revelling in her happiness and joy.

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There wasn’t a lot of quiet in our house tonight. We weren’t all seriously watching the carols and singing along with our flashlight features turned on on our phones… we were talking over one another, tuning in and out to songs on telly, singing along to some and talking about our goals for next year and just having the best time together.

We didn’t need no community park concert. We were all we needed.

And then I looked outside and – YES! – our new solar Christmas light was working!

It looked magical πŸ™‚

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My memories of Christmas carols stem way back. Growing up on Christmas Eve I’d sit in the lounge room with my Dad as they played, and Mum would come in and out, busy in her preparations for a big family Christmas lunch the next day. We would then wait up ’til midnight and exchange presents, wishing each other a Merry Christmas, and go to bed excited and buzzing that Christmas was finally here.

They are the best memories.

Well we made some of our own tonight. And though the night actually started out pretty average and flat… as soon as the carols started, something magical occurred in our lounge room.

It was, Christmas magic. β™₯

#1397 The hair can wait, but the help can’t

Today I attended a Parent Helpers Morning Tea at baby girl’s school.

I wrote some time ago that I got the invite to the tea and happily accepted. To be honest, I was feeling a bit shit this morning and actually contemplated pulling out.

On top of my hesitation, I had called my hairdresser this morning to cancel my upcoming appointment with them, since it clashed with me helping out baby girl at swimming.

Why was I going?

I was busy already.

What was the point?

What made me say yes in the first place?

I had these questions circling through my mind, but at the same time the thought of not going didn’t sit right with me either.

So I went… and oh man am I glad I did.

Firstly, I had a really great time. I caught up with other parents and baby girl’s teacher, and it was lovely to be in a slightly different social setting without our kids screaming “Mum look at me!” from the playground at pick-up.

Oh, my THE SPREAD. It was this insanely long table with all kinds of sandwiches, rolls and wraps, fruit and snacks and chocolate and cake and sweets and crackers and everything in between… it was amazing. The coffee and tea window was set up and moving quickly despite the long line, and all in all it was a really well organised morning tea.

But then the principal spoke, and thanked us… she pointed out and spoke about an elderly gentleman, telling us that despite his flailing health, he had been volunteering and helping kids at the school with their reading for 11 years now. I looked at the sombre-looking frail man hanging his head, wishing he would hold it up high. Tears gathered in my eyes and I willed myself to not be a sook by taking a big sip of my tea.

What a man.

Then there were two students who had made up poems for all the helpers. They read them out, and though they were simple, they were so, so sweet, and totally pulled at my heart-strings. I was standing there thinking “damn it, I’m not supposed to cry.”

And then I realised. I realised that all of us in there, all of the helpers really did deserve this special morning. We deserved the thanks. I was reminded of how only that morning I had cancelled my hair appointment as I had forgotten over a month ago when I booked it, that it clashed with the last swimming session baby girl had through the school.

Baby girl wanted me there at swimming, and I couldn’t let her down. I cancelled my pre-Christmas hair appointment instead.

But secretly, someone was looking out for me. Because when I called to cancel, the hairdresser was able to fit me in next week with her… at a better and more convenient time than the original one would have been anyway.

So, winning.

I made the morning tea. I gratefully accepted the thanks amongst so many more.

I cancelled the hair appointment and made that tiny sacrifice for baby girl…

And I was thanked.

These sacrifices we make, big or small, are all eventually noticed… if not by friends, family or your child’s school… then by the Universe. β™₯

#1374 Us 4, like old times

Today we found ourselves in a place, a space, a set up, that we haven’t been in for a while… and yet it was something that we used to live and breathe.

And eat. As it was concerning the old kitchen table.

Not my kitchen table… but my parents’ old kitchen table.

It was me, my sister, and my parents. And we sat down to eat in exactly the same spots we used to all those years ago.

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😯

Wow. This is a big deal. We go to my parents’ house a fair bit, and even sis and I will find ourselves there at the same time too… but it will usually be with the rest of the fam. Hubbies. Kids. And we never sit at the small round table when there are 9 of us.

But today, only 4. The original clan;) I had to take a snapshot of the moment.

It wasn’t the only flashback in time though… When we were headed out later, sis and I in the back seat of Mum’s car as she drove, Dad in passenger… she stepped on the gas, HARD, as she reversed flew down their long narrow drive.

Sis and I turned to each other with looks of surprise on our faces before I burst out laughing.

Oh Mum. How could I forget your insane driving?

Memories. β€πŸ‘¨β€πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§β€πŸ‘§

🀣🚘

 

#1361 The first Piano Keys

When I was about 7, I started swimming lessons.

This was a big deal. Back when I was a kid (I feel sooo old saying that) there weren’t so many kids around me doing after-school or extra-curricular activities. I did swimming for a couple of years. I know Hubbie only started playing basketball when he was about 12… and that he had to FIGHT FOR.

Today it is a whole different ball game. Parents are booking in their kids to things that they have absolutely zero interest in, let alone what they actually like.

They book them in to activities that they themselves failed at, so that they can live vicariously through their offspring…

They book them in to lessons so that they can become the next musical/sports/arts prodigy…

They book them into classes that they think are cool, or that they think they need, like a foreign language for when they have to travel overseas in 30 years time as a political minister or something…

😏

Baby girl currently does swimming. She also wants to do gymnastics (and I am holding off with all I can until next year for that one).

And today, she started piano.

I can’t keep up.

I feel for her. I mean, she loves doing these things, but if I am tired taking her to and from these places, how the hell does she feel?

It is a great opportunity to learn, I must admit. After sis and bro-in-law passed down their piano-keyboard to us, Hubbie saw the potential in setting her up young, and looking to see if she had any musical inclinations within her.

Yep. It is all Hubbie πŸ˜‰

But she surprised me. Following her lesson today she came home, ran to her piano-keyboard and proceeded to copy the simple keys she had learnt during the lesson.

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I was impressed.

Who knows where this road leads her. But if she lets me, I’m more than willing to take her for the ride. 🎹 🎼🎢