#869 Late night soccer

Just as well I brought the hat home last Friday.

It had been in my old room, at my parents house. Just as I have been purging and sorting through my own stuff, so too have my parents been trying to purge – themselves of my stuff. LOL.

I always said I would tend to the big pile of childhood and teenage accumulation and mementos that I had left at their place when I first moved out. That promise turned into a faraway and not very concrete date, and so my parents took it upon themselves to take everything out of hiding and line it up accessible and for me to see in my old room.

Every time I am there, I go through a little more. I came across some carnival hats that baby girl was enamoured with… I thought ‘fine.’ There’s many things I am bringing home, simply because I am not sure of what to do with it, but I feel that I should really be throwing it away.

The hat, is not the case.

Because the hat, is from the homeland. It holds my parents roots, and is an emblem of where I hail from.

The discovery of the hat was so timely, because I was able to hold it near and dear to me, during the viewing of the Soccer, very very late (or very very early, whichever way you roll) last night/this morning.

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Croatia has progressed into the second round of finals in the FIFA world cup. I always said if they did get this far, then I would stay up/get up early, and watch. I knew baby girl having school holidays would make it easier – no early start and subsequent running around after a 3-hour sleep due to Soccer match… so very very early this morning, that’s what I did.

I had a preorganised massive blanket on the couch to wrap myself in. Little did I know it was the coldest night of the year, but I was all tucked up and cosy, the only light coming from the guys on the green field and the soft glow of our hallway.

In those 2 and a half hours, I learnt a bit. I didn’t think I would. I picked up strategies and things about the game which I had never noticed before. I got emotional, my head lifting from the pillow in anticipation when a goal was near; I whispered “damn!” at missed opportunities; and I also nearly fell asleep several times.

I am more sleep ambassador than a soccer one.

But it was the memories and the times I had spent watching the World Cup before, that led me to this night. I remember my Dad staying up late, and me sitting with him, trying to work out the game. Asking him questions. Things about the goalie, and how hard his job was. All of this came flooding back to me, the time I spent with my Dad watching this sport, excited about the rare late nights, and the bonding that I didn’t realise I was partaking in, ’til just last night.

And there was more. I remembered World Cup soccer parties at my sister’s place. The excitement of driving across town at midnight to watch the tournament take place. I remember sleeping in my bed at 3am, and the phone ring because Croatia had just progressed into another round, and my sister across town was calling to talk to my Dad, who was watching on our side of town.

“Sorry SmikG,” she said. “I’m calling for Dad.”

So casual, yet so novel. It was fascinating, how this event turned all our lives upside down.

And then when Croatia did make 3rd place in that same year, the happiness the people experienced and devoted themselves to, awoke something in me.

A deep curiosity for World Cup Soccer. Now, it was going to become a ritual.

Years later when Australia made the World Cup, remarkably it was Croatia they faced in one-play off. Although I couldn’t really lose in this scenario – ‘homeland’ team, playing ‘home’ team – I nonetheless went for the regional underdog, while Hubbie, then BF, was happily cheering for the land down under.

Our rules were: take a shot when your team makes goal. And run around the house with the national flag wrapped around you.

We did it.

Meanwhile on the other side of the world, my parents were in Croatia, their native home, watching the very same game. They would wince when Australia faltered, silently cheering and smiling with glee when they moved ahead, noticed by my uncle who said to them

“Why, you’re cheering for Australia, not Croatia!”

That’s because Australia was their real home now.

Or maybe it had to do with going for the underdog in their current location, just as I was doing, cheering for Croatia to win as I sat in my Australian house.

I never remember who won. I don’t even care. All I remember are the memories.

I am not a soccer devotee. I will not claim I know all the players’ names. I will not pretend to watch soccer at any other time for the next 4 years after this event.

But I am a fan of where I come from. And as long as Croatia will feature in this 4-yearly event, so too will I haul my ass out of bed in freezing cold Winter temperatures, and remember, the memories from before.

For those keeping score… my ass-hauling last night DID pay off. Croatia won. In an epic extra-time plus penalty shoot-out setting. They won on the last kick!

Incredible. And if all I remember from this World Cup is…

coldest night

reminiscing on the past

cuddled up on the couch

Hubbie joining me post 6am before heading off to work

and then cheering happily because they had won (and I was going back to bed!)

then that would be enough.

#825 A Royal Party

We had a few things to celebrate tonight.

It was my Dad’s birthday this week.

So too was it my parents wedding anniversary.

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And then there was the little matter of… crowns.

My family and I gathered excitedly around the TV in my parents’ lounge room as the royal proceedings commenced after dinner.

Or should I say, I gathered excitedly. I wasn’t the only one surprised by my sudden outburst at seeing Megan’s ex-workmates from Suits donning their finest scrubs as they rocked up to the wedding of the future Duchess of Sussex.

My family, more so Hubbie, was quite baffled at my sudden revert back to my 16 year-old self as I yelled excitedly “it’s Harvey! Harvey’s here! And Mike! And that one who was in Angel too!”

You know how when you watch a show for a while and grow to love its characters, you start to feel like you know them? Even more, they are like your friends?

Well Rachel Megan and her Suits pals were my buddies… and then she met Prince Harry.

Awww. ♥♥♥

Needless to say I have loved this story and their budding romance EVER SINCE.

And yet still, when I went teenage hormonal tonight like I was at a rock concert, I even surprised myself.

‘Huh. So I am excited then aren’t I?!’

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Let’s face it, when are we going to see another Royal wedding like this? Maybe in 20 years time, when William and Kate’s kids walk down the aisle… so put that into perspective. These things don’t come around often, and it’s pretty cool that we were able to watch it tonight.

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Ahh, princesses. Princes. Weddings. Dashing lads and beautiful brides. And watching someone you admire from afar, get married… it was almost as good as a Suits eps.

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And our family affair of celebrations was ramped up a notch with some opportune headwear…

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And cake too 😉

 

 

#817 Sick Timing

When I was teenager, the word sick could have meant 3 completely different things:

Sick (1): Something great. Too cool for school. Ultra awesome. Best-thing-since-sliced-bread good.

Eg. “That N*Sync and Richard Marx love-song collaboration is sick.”

(Yep. I said teenagers).

Sick (2): Filthy. So wrong. Depraved. Inappropriate. Get-away-from-me-now-I-can’t-believe-you-just-said-that, sick.

Eg. “I love Maths.”

“You’re sick.”

The third definition of sick is funnily enough, the only one I have anything to do with nowadays, being a parent of a kindergarten-attending girl.

Sick (3): Of having your immune system worn out. With cold. Feverish. Unwell. Tired. Sniffly. Coughing, sneezing, achiness usually presents.

This is the sick I was dealing with today.

But I couldn’t help but be thankful for the timing. How is it that often the sickness comes when you have nothing on? For the first time in ages we were home today, and the last 3 Fridays we’ve had appointments appointments appointments. It’s been mad crazy busy, so when we woke up this morning and baby girl was still suffering with a sniffily and snotty nose, feeling very worse for wear and overly tired, I knew it was going to be that kind of day.

That ‘tending-to-her’ day.

I was actually glad I was the one to be there. I didn’t have anywhere to be. I wasn’t cancelling appointments – sure we had to cancel a playdate, but for now that leisure would have to wait. I gave her Panadol, checked her temperature, felt her forehead a billion times… blew her nose a trillion times… bathed her and fed her and cuddled and kissed her every time she asked… and didn’t.

I was grateful I was home with her for this most important of sick days – the first one is always the hardest – and though tomorrow I AM away from her, I sure as hell hope the worst has passed, and the love and support I gave her today will help her on her road to healing.

So the cold, though shit, had good timing. Sick. (Number 1!)

#768 Purple hair

Have a look at the below pic:

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That’s me taking a photo of my hair getting soaked with hair colouring. Look a little closer.

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(Well not too close to see that pimple on my chin…) See that colour on my forehead? See the tint coming off my hair, exposed to sunlight?

PURPLE.

Now calm down folks. It’s not as insane as it looks. In fact, hair colouring always looks WAY more vibrant in cream form than it turns out to be later on when it is all washed out.

I just had this weird thought earlier in the week, thinking of my upcoming hairdresser’s appointment, and I went “I want to do something crazy… I’m colouring my hair purple.”

Just like that. Why purple? Well it’s kind of a thing now, isn’t it? I used to love the colour exclusively (now that preference is usually red) and I even once convinced my parents to paint our entire house a soft shade of lilac. TRUE STORY. I shudder to think of the crazy things baby girl will talk me into when she is a teen…

But, I just felt like going a bit cray cray, you know? You know when you reach a point, when you say “Stuff it?”

STUFF IT.

I take inspiration from Hubbie. As a family member said to him recently “Every time I see you, you’re doing something different with your hair and facial hair.”

He says “it’s just hair. It’ll grow back.”

It’s just colour. My parents eventually painted over those walls.

My hair colour will fade, only to be replaced by something new.

It’s not freakishly ‘Purple Rain’ purple or anything. I am not going totally cray cray. I’m just dabbling in some, you know, Motherhood cray cray. The motherhood cray cray where you just wanna shake off those cobwebs and not give a stuff and be totally selfish in your time, money and activities: THAT sort of cray cray.

There was no bleach involved, which means that unless my head is in the sun, all you will think is that my hair colour is dark. But stepping out, baby…

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It shines. It’s not full on. It’s different, Kath and Kim style.

I like it. It’s noice.

#726 Date with the folks

I can’t remember exactly how long, but going into today it felt like it had been ages between catch-ups with my parents.

As in, a face-to-face one. We met up with them today at a local shopping centre on their side of town for some lunch, where we ate in a little cafe, chatted, caught up on some stuff, and just generally enjoyed their company.

It was so chilled, and yet so necessary.

We had things to do during the day, but had promised that when we were done we would then stop by their house on our way back home. What was meant to be a half hour visit, turned into a 4 hour “let’s just stay for dinner now” visit.

The backyard was the best bit. Sitting around the small table, chilling under the fruit trees, enjoying the cool breeze wafting on through, and talking about goals, dreams, life, and making plans and exploring ideas about it ALL.

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I swear their backyard is THE BEST. The greatest memories have been had amidst those trees. Baby girl went a bit rampant with my phone and took the above photo of Hubbie my Mum and I, and then as I wasn’t watching went ahead and took a whole lot more…

Topping off the night was an impromptu visit to Gino’s pizza to grab our dinner, and unless you’re from the North will you only understand the institution that Gino’s is – that it still is, even after the owner’s have changed! If you don’t get it, I’ll just tell you this: people go out of their way to pick up the pizzas as Gino’s don’t do delivery, which is what we had to do tonight even though I started off with saying “let’s just get a pizza delivered.”

!!!

Having a classic pizza you haven’t had in ages, in your old hood, is pretty damn awesome.

Under the Pear tree, Parents, Pizza… Ahh. Pretty Perfect 🙂

And just for show, check out the photos baby girl took in the backyard while we weren’t looking:

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(The garden duck she bathed)

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(Legit she took this, it is soooo beautiful)

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(In an art gallery this one would be called ’80s Flashback – The Clothesline against a sea of Corrugated Plastic’)

 

 

#634 I love Main street, and let me count the ways… no.2

Oh. Hello there little fella.

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What did you do today? Oh, shopping? What a coin-chi-den-che (go and watch Only You starring the beautifully talented Marisa Tomei and oh-so-cheeky Robert Downey Jr, laugh at some Billy Zane hilarity and then come back to me).

I picked up this guy while out and about getting bits of this and bits of that for the festive season… I got some presents for others (yes some for Christmas, KK surprises 🙂 ) others just because, presents, and then some presents were for ME! Sorry that was meant to say Hubbie, my bad.

But this guy came along not as a present for me (though he is so damn cute) but as a little something for another little fella. Aww shucks. Maybe I will keep him.

And this little guy wanted to suss out some of my other finds…

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Pineapple lollies? Redskins? Are you even serious right now?

YES. Yes I am.

You know what was annoying about buying the pineapple lollies for Hubbie, who used to love them 15 or so years ago? He couldn’t remember loving them 15 or so years ago! Sooooo disappointing. You surprise someone and they don’t even remember these things, like are you even my Hubbie???

Sigh.

And the redskins… they taste the same. I was 15 again.

I am loving Main Street shopping and all the weird and wonderful things I’m finding there. ♥

#614 Mementos from the past

I am in the process of sorting through all the childhood things I left behind at my parents house when I first moved in with Hubbie. So each time I visit, I go through a drawer, a cupboard, a shelf, and I sort into 3 piles:

The throw away pile

The recycle/donate pile

The take home and keep forever and ever pile

I have come across some absolutely amazing things, LET ME TELL YOU. Watch this space carefully. I even came across a note, that nearly made me clap my hands with joy… it’s not with me yet, or else I would have posted about it already.

In due time. 😀 😀 😀

But anyway. Along with getting rid of some items today (if I can’t remember where it is from, or it doesn’t spark any interest in me, I remove it from sight immediately in a rather ruthless and cold manner – I have to because I hoard soooo easily) I took home a fair few more.

All little things. Which makes it ok.

But some of the interesting finds were these:

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Bits I had TOTALLY forgotten about. Bits that told a story, of another time, and another place. And Bits that just made me go “huh?”

Bits I had TOTALLY forgotten about

The pale blue rosary. Who gave it to me? I don’t know. Was it a baby gift? I don’t know. Did someone think I was going to come out a boy?

I DON’T KNOW.

But it has always been there, and therefore has always given me some kind of comfort, since I know it has been around for as long as I have.

The Christmas tree pin. It lights up. I think. My mum gave it to me… I think. But regardless of who gifted it to me, it’s Christmas, and so immediately, KEEP.

Bits that tell a story

The blue and pink zig zag choker. When I was 13 and overseas for the first time, my cousin gave this to me. I think I can even remember, that she had made it.

I am not now, nor have I ever been a choker wearer. But I wore it then, several times, both in front of her and away from her, as a kind of experimentation with self, and you know, teenage years. I had completely forgotten about this one. It takes me to a very memorable and significant trip from my childhood, and so this has to stay.

My incognito watch. I wore this in my teenage years, even possibly leading up to, and during my aforementioned overseas trip. I have to say, I had no idea what incognito meant when I wore it. Oh man.

Bits that make me go “huh?”

Those keys on the bugs bunny key chain. You know how you accumulate a thousand and one keychains in your life? No? Well I somehow received a lot. As a present, attached to some gift set, and hey, key chains are an awesome present to give somebody as a holiday souvenir, because who doesn’t want a picture on their keys of some kind of landmark, that they have NEVER been to???!!!

So, I have no idea who gave me this key chain, or if in fact, I got it when my parents and I went up to Surfers Paradise one time. And those keys… like, what? I told my Mum to throw this one out, and then stopped in my tracks.

What would those keys open up?

???

“Maybe you should keep those,” Mum suggested. “It might be to open those brown boxes that kept all those books you used to write in…”

My old diaries. Hmmm. She knew about that VERY well…

So, what a memory blast. As life goes on, I find it fascinating that we used to live a life so long ago, that we can’t remember a lot about. And we come across things, that used to be so regular in our lives, and now, we draw a blank. It’s incredible, and as a child, I used to always say “I’ll never forget,” baffled with adults who couldn’t remember events of their childhood.

I now forget.

You know what might help me though? A watch. I know what incognito is now, and I certainly go by it online… 😉