#464 A new way to Write

I had it REAL good when baby girl was in fact, a baby.

I mean, aside from the not-knowing what the hell I was doing, second-guessing every decision, crying a fair bit, being sleepless and fatigued most of the time, and just wondering when this confusing and struggling never-ending stage would pass.

But then, came the naps. That’s how I had it good.

During her day naps, baby girl would sleep for hours. Sometimes her day naps combined, would equal about 5 hours of sleep time for her, and non-baby time for me, a day.

This was really good. At first it was all catch up on this, maybe I should meal prep for dinner, pay an online bill, make that important phone call I’ve been putting off for 3 months, and wash that pile of soiled baby clothes that will re-fill by the day’s end.

But then, she settled a bit…. while the naps remained.

And as she settled, so did I. I relaxed into Motherhood, and so began journalling again.

I really wanted to capture as much of parenthood and her early months and milestones as much as I could, and so recommenced a fave past-time of mine that I hadn’t done for quite a while, a past-time that I both love and loathe simultaneously. I feel like I HAVE to do it, and that is exactly WHY I loathe it. Because I feel it needs to be done.

And I can’t stop.

And then, I relaxed MORE into Motherhood. And I began to do some food reviews, here and there, read some books, start notes on them that would eventually become my book reviews… and hell, I even started my parent blog, SmikG.

And years later, that followed with this one.

Now as the years have passed, her nap durations, as her naps, have significantly reduced to just one a day. It’s still allowed me some great ‘me’ time, to do whatever I need to do, and yet I always try to do what I feel I need to: write in some capacity, however I can.

However recently, I’ve come to a realisation. With baby girl getting cheekier and cheekier at bed time, her hyper-activity shooting through the roof, I decided I had to do the only thing that made sense.

Drop the nap altogether.

It was doing me good, because it meant she was more tired (or so we hoped) at bedtime, since she hadn’t napped at all during the day, and would be ‘out’ quicker. Well yes. She is ‘out’ a bit faster, a bit less reluctant to drink 15 sips or water, go to the loo 7 times, jump on the bed 10 times, and then ask for a tummy, hand, arm, leg, foot and back massage, following her 3 books read to her by lamplight.

Yeah, a bit less.

But anyway, bedtime routines are somewhat better. She does go to bed slightly earlier now. But it means my writing time during the day, IS GONE.

R.I.P precious writing time.

Or so I thought.

She’s 3 and a half, I thought today. Often, she is quite happy to play on her own, build some blocks, or watch some Paw Petrol.

Surely she would let me do some writing. She’s not 2 and climbing over me to grab at the laptop as I pay a bill or buy the one concert ticket I’ll be going to that year.

A year and a half, makes a difference.

And so, today, I tried. We had had our coffee/babycino/cake break, she was fuelled, she had Nickelodeon shows on in the background, a whole family room full of toys including her new Sofia the First mini figurines, and I sat in the same room as her, and began to do what I started all those years ago, so tentatively, while she was out cold in another room –  I began to write.

Journalling in fact. And there were times I stopped, and she called my name, repeatedly, and I looked back over my shoulder. Repeatedly. And she left the room and came back, and even walked on over and yelled “O” multiple times after looking at the keypad. But after about 90 minutes, I had written 3 pages long.

3 pages! I was a bit surprised, yet pleasantly so. Had I just learnt a new way to write? Multi-tasking, with child in room, interrupting me every so often?

And I did it?

I did it. Yes it wasn’t smooth sailing, but it was done. My quiet writing time may be over, but that’s not to say, I can’t write if I don’t want to.

Where there’s a will there’s a way.

No excuses people. That’s what I take from this. No excuses. And I’m pretty chuffed with that 🙂

 

#391 Wine by the water

This is an alcohol-induced post, so it will likely be forgotten by tomorrow morning… I will wake at 9ish, and scratching my head, wonder ‘did I write my gratitude post last night?’

And wine-induced SmikG will already be posted over here on carcrashgratitude, with a smug ‘yep.’

I’m talking bullshit, let’s continue.

But, we went to a new restaurant by the water tonight, and with the rain pouring outside, providing an oddly romantic backdrop, we enjoyed a lovely dinner, and a lovely glass of wine.

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It’s the little things. Wine makes me happy, and that makes me grateful 🙂

#390 Baby girl’s naps no.2 – catch-up

This post has very little to do with baby girl, and all to do with what I do when she is NOT around.

I’m lucky that at the age of 3 and a half, she still naps. About, an hour to 90 minutes a day, sometimes even 2 hours if we’ve been to the beach, or she’s been to kinder or run around heaps. And even then I start to make a lot of noise at the 90 minute mark, as I know that putting her to bed that night might be a tad difficult after a long nap.

She’s just like her Mum. She loves her sleep, and I’m fortunate to say, she always has.

Today she went for an hour 40 minutes. During this time, I plop myself in front of the laptop, and begin all kinds of writing tasks/passions.

Today it was personal journal writing; food review writing; and book review writing.

I’ve been behind in my food and book reviews for so long. Soooo long. You know when you are so behind in something, you start to consider giving it up?

‘It’s too hard. I can’t keep up.’

‘My life is too busy right now.’

‘This is getting out of hand.’

‘Maybe I’ll try this in 5 years time.’

I wasn’t sure, whether any of it was worth it. The reviews. The blog. Even the gratitude. I question myself on some days, when things are hard, when time is pressed, and I don’t think I’m going anywhere.

But, I am grateful for the stubborn Lion that I am.

Because I just can’t freaking give up so easy. It’s not in my DNA.

You shouldn’t either.

As hard as it has been in the last months/years/life since parenthood (!) I have still persevered. I have moved EVER SO SLOWLY. And I fortunately, have not given up. These moments I get when baby girl is napping, and then when she is sleeping late at night, I am able to move on, to try and catch up, to keep things going with my blogs, my personal writings, my passionate pursuits, as much as I can.

They are slow, ever so slow, baby steps. A snails pace. And there are days when I have to do other things. ‘Responsible’ things. I can’t write every day, and those days feel so wasted on me. But when I can, I try my damn best.

But today, after doing some more writing, and then taking a kind of step back to go ‘hmm, my food reviews are almost catching up,’ and ‘hmm, I’m heading through my current book review at a decent pace’ (with 3 more looming in the background but that’s not the point!) I felt, good. I felt like, I was getting somewhere. And I started to feel like, I might actually be catching up.

That was such a good feeling. And I am so grateful, I had it. More so, I’m grateful that baby girl’s reliable naps, gave me the opportunity for it 🙂

#378 Work equality and opportunity

On the 8th of March, otherwise known as ‘International Women’s Day,’ it is appropriate that I should be grateful for opportunities where I, as a woman, are treated equal to men.

And despite my MASSIVE rant just earlier, that is exactly what happened today.

I realised with happiness that despite the many factors that many other women can be discriminated against in the workplace, that are relevant to me, such as being a Part-Time working Mum Chick, I am still to this day, included.

I am given training.

I am taught new things, ahead of others.

I am kept in the loop.

My outside-of-work hours needs are met constantly, and I get time off when I require it.

And most importantly, I do not feel undervalued compared to any other employee there, old or new, full-time or part-time, woman or man.

If you have an employer like this, thank your lucky stars. I sure do.

And if you wanna get into some nitty-gritty, my RANT post over at SmikG may be the one for you…

 

#372 Getting used to the burn

Last week following my Zumba home workout, and my short ab crunching spell that was in line with something I had seen in an online video by a health instructor, I felt elated. Full of energy. Excited at this new start, this new me, and this new version of SmikG that got to have ‘her time,’ when baby girl was at kinder.

More of me was coming back, baby.

But. Then I got tired. Sleepy. Flat. I hadn’t exercised in a long time, in terms of exercise you do when you are doing repeated steps in order to feel burn in certain places. The type of exercise where I am run off my feet with baby girl and house tasks, sure, I freaking excel at.

But an actual workout? Nah. The closest thing had been pre-natal yoga, 4 years ago.

I had felt the burn alright. In my tummy. Below my buttocks. I was a bit dismayed that I felt so tired following it, that I didn’t quite know what to expect today.

Well. I’ve been trying to do my ab crunches where I can in the last week. And then as I took out my trusty Zumba dvd again today, completing one workout… I finished feeling… FINE.

Ok, I thought. Time to do the online video from my phone.

I copied the short sequence of movements, lasting a few minutes.

I felt the ab burn ALRIGHT, HARD. But still… I felt FINE.

I was waiting for it. And waiting for it. I thought I knew what was to come…

‘Now I’ll feel tired and screwed for the rest of the day.’

And yet surprisingly, happily, I didn’t. I didn’t feel tired. Weak. I went about the rest of my time, running around the house doing various tasks, and feeling invigorated. I felt GREAT!

Sure, I feel pretty tired now. I haven’t stopped all day. But I am so happy that I didn’t get that flat feeling following my workout like I did last week, as it allowed me to  go through my day with boundless energy, and a strong sense of grabbing life by the balls and saying “Hey YOU!  I’m in charge today!”

And I sure was. All because I’m getting used to the burn 🙂

 

#361 The note

I didn’t realise there was such a thing as a ‘sad surprise’ until it was staring me in the face early this morning.

It was a really weird feeling.

After spending 20 minutes going through work emails, at about 7:30 I headed on over to the communal kitchen with my cereal container and fruit to organise my breakfast. Alone in there, I set about getting a bowl, spoon, knife, and then opened my container with my weetbix inside….

And staring back at me was a note.

I just stared, shocked. I read it. And then I read it again.

I stood there, still waking up, still unsure of how to react to this surprising note Hubbie had left me.

After standing like that for what seemed like a while, I finally took out my phone and took a quick snap before anyone ventured in to see me photographing my dry breakfast biscuits.

It was this:

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And my bittersweet feelings and confusion were so, because when I traced back the events of last night, I realised with a heavy heart, that Hubbie must have written the note and snuck it into my container…

before we had our very decent argument.

Sigh.

It made me so sad. I loved surprises like these. I lived for them. I do things like this for Hubbie, setting up unplanned events and leaving notes and gifts for him in places I know he’ll find them, sometimes to see his face when he discovers it, and other times with the knowledge that even though I’m not there, a smile will spread over his face and will touch his heart with the realisation that I’ve gone to such effort to make him happy, even when I am not around.

I couldn’t even enjoy the note properly, because as it was, we hadn’t really resolved anything from our disagreement. We had gone to bed dissatisfied and angry, and really it wasn’t a lovely way to go to bed on a Saturday night.

Still, I sat back at my desk with the note, my phone, and my breakfast, and messaged him a heartfelt thank you, expressing my surprise and love. Despite the fact we had not cleared the air, I was still touched.

And hours later at the end of my shift, when I got home, we solved things fairly quickly… that’s because we compromise well and choose peace, over our stubborn stances of being right… but maybe the note that ‘Future’ Hubbie left me had a role to play in that too.

It was as if ‘Future” Hubbie had gone back in time, planted that note to help ease our future woes, and then jumped back into the present to wait for the air to clear.

A bit Back to the Future-esque I know, but an interesting thought none the same.

It certainly explains why he added an ‘e’ to the end of ‘wait’… you know, ‘Future’ Hubbie rushing and all to leave the note before present-day SmikG and Hubbie walked in, making an unforgivable spelling error that all partners of writers should NEVER make.

But, I forgive him. The note. I had felt sad when I first saw it, but earlier as I dated it and tucked it away to keep forever, I cherished the thought of love and happiness that he put into it.

And I am so grateful.

It is the little things… for they are, the big things.

All is good again 😉

#337 Food Truck festival fun

The Mornington Food Truck festival runs from now, up until Sunday the 29th of January. We ventured over this evening with the MIL, to check out the digs and of course, grab some food truck food.

I had the meaty paella:

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Honestly, for $12 it was underwhelming. (Foodie SmikG is coming out now) I only had one prawn in my container, the portion was meagre at best, and though it was spicy and had some good kick, seriously for that price I expected more than two spoonfuls with a sprinkling of rocket on the side.

Yes, I know we’re eating from trucks, people. But the quality of food FROM food trucks has increased substantially in the last few years, something most people in Melbourne would be well aware of. Anyway.

Baby girl had some chips, Hubbie a steak sandwich, and the MIL also went the burger route, as we sat within the greenery alongside the racecourse, under the shelter of the grand old trees, feeling the cool evening breeze sweep in.

There were rides as well, which baby girl and I participated in yet again… yep, the teacup ride. And baby girl saw some clown heads moving slowly side to side, which she wasn’t too sure about so she just let Mum and Dad win her a prize. Those open clown mouths are pretty scary.

It was a pleasant evening, and to be honest despite the paella, I just wanted to be out and about amongst people enjoying MY town. Nothing gripes me more than seeing people from out of town enjoying our precinct, knowing that we can’t due to time restrictions and work commitments! So just by being there tonight, I was happy.

Grateful. 🙂

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And to top off the night? We took home some Nutella-centred churros from another food truck, and had them at home… they were still deliciously warm and crunchy, nom nom nom.

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(Apologies for the photo, the churros tasted a 1000 times better than what is actually shown).

It was the food highlight of the night, and a lovely way to end our evening adventure.