#1642 Day 144 of getting there: Happy August Memories

Today, I did some washing. Hung it in our backyard.

I baked some muffins. Scents of banana and cocoa filled the walls within our home.

I ripped out old plants and dying branches from flowers that desperately needed a good prune. I tidied it up…

To make our home look more pretty.

And it was all the more convenient and timely, that I did these random, but interconnected odd jobs, as the theme unifying it all was that of the home.

Tending to the home.

Using the home.

Filling up the home.

Because on this day 4 years, we bought this home.

I made the winning bid. When I think of that day, I have to shake my head in disbelief sometimes. It was 4 years ago, but many parts of that day are still so clear to me, even now.

I remember the well wishes I received the morning of the auction by some amazing family and friends.

I remember driving up with my Mum and baby girl… and being so nervous, that both Mum and I had to stop at a servo to pee on the way.

I remember arriving 15 minutes into the inspection before auction. I remember the street being FULL of cars. I remember nosy neighbours walking off, having had enough of a sticky beak, not caring to see who would get the house.

I remember NOT ONE auctioneer approaching me as I wandered through the house for the final time before the dum dum daaaa! moment.

I remembered my sister seeing the view from upstairs and saying “it’s a great house” but saying it in a way like “shit, it will be competitive.”

I remember my bro-in-law saying similar words, saying he’d overheard a lot of interested parties talking about it.

I remember all of us standing outside in the front yard, with the strong Winter wind blowing around.

I remember baby girl running around the yard as the main auctioneer started his spiel, referring to her in his opening monologue.

I knew then, that that was a GOOD SIGN.

I remember him motioning to the water views behind us, while I secretly cursed him – “don’t remind them of the views!”

I remember him saying that the winning person could celebrate on the main street afterwards at one of the many cafes, and the desire was so strong in me then, because we had been to those cafes and those restaurants. We had walked those streets, we had holidayed here, and we had done our research.

We were ready.

I remember the auction beginning, and Mum standing near baby girl, watching her run around while mumbling under her breath that the price was going too high.

I remember my sister positioned closer to the nature strip, creating a barrier so that baby girl couldn’t escape.

And I remember my bro-in-law standing behind me, ready to whisper words of advice.

I remember staying quiet for a long time.

I remember the TOTAL SATISFACTION (this is SO clear to me) when I put up my hand, and made my first bid.

The auctioneer looked at me, and his expression conveyed something else.

I had come in later. He knew I meant business.

And I remember how when I made the second, third bid, one of the agents made a beeline to me, thinking he could now help me.

Huh. Where were you guys INSIDE the house?

I had my own agent behind me 😉

I remember holding that winning bid… and the auctioneer urging others to jump in… while I begged in my head “please no, just let it be over…”

Then, IT WAS OVER.

There was clapping. There was cheering. People around me were genuinely happy.

And we were over the moon!

Inside, a familiar face! I saw the agent I had been talking to leading up to that day… He had been hiding out with the owners, of course.

I signed contracts with shaky hands, and snapped a photo of the interior, with the price tag, to Hubbie.

HE WAS OVER THE MOON.

After celebratory photos with the auction board, we headed to the main street.

Mum, sis, baby girl and I had our celebratory coffees and treats.

And when we got home hours later, Hubbie was on cloud nine.

I remember all this so fondly, and I don’t think I can ever forget such a momentous day for us.

A day where we realised our big dream of sea changing, a day when we made it.

And so when baby girl snapped a sunset from my phone this evening (I’ve trained her well) I didn’t think much of it…

‘Til I previewed it later.

It was blurry. Much like a memory can be. But there was that lawn. I could still see that sign in my head.

The guy who was standing to the left of me… the two ladies on my right. The family of four who I thought of often, comprised of a couple with their two young girls, who walked off half-way through the auction…

I hope they found their dream house, just as we found ours.

Now there were different plants, different colours, and different people coming in and out…

And 4 years on, there’s no place we’d rather be. 💖🏡🌅🥰

#1629 Day 131 of getting there: one step closer

Oh wow. The feeling of relief, of relaxation, tiredness even… is immense.

But also, there is exhilaration.

I have to thank Hubbie and baby girl. They let me do my thing these last few days, escape to quiet rooms of the house, yell at them to not yell, and even run upstairs onto our bed where I could truly be at peace.

To write.

I sacrificed a lot. Baby girl’s school work. She did maybe a task a day.

The cooking. It was either Hubbie doing it or grabbing some kind of half-healthy takeaway.

The time. Instead of spending time with my family, I was furiously going over and over and over my manuscript, trying to get it up to the standard I would be okay with, before sending it off for a competition tonight.

Don’t mention the cleaning.

Don’t mention the washing.

Don’t mention the clothes hanging up in the house waiting to be put away.

Don’t mention anything to do with the house!

The phone calls. The jobs I put off. I sacrificed so much, and I would do it all again.

You know what? Because I love it.

When you find that which you’re passionate about, you want to spend as much of your life doing it, right?

If my house, the washing, even some odd jobs have to suffer I WILL TAKE IT.

Because I’d rather be known as ‘that writing gal,’ than the woman who had a clean house.

Really. What is important here?

(Having said all that, I’m actually aching to clean every crevice of the house tomorrow!)

Anyway… the mad rush is over. 88 thousand words have been submitted, and I couldn’t be happier.

It’s not even about whether I win or not. I honestly doubt I will. But I proved to myself that I could hit the deadline, I pushed myself to re-edit and re-structure my novel, and if you think about it, regardless of the results, I am one step closer to getting there.

And one step closer is a great place to be.

#1375 The gift of hoses and foresight

I caught a moment on camera as the sun went down tonight.

Hubbie had decided to wash the car in the evening, and baby girl as usual had decided to ‘help.’

If you have a child that wants to help you do anything, you can imagine what the above would be like… much less what it’d be like when a HOSE is involved.

It was all well and good for me as I was taking a momentary pause and snapping away at them… but Hubbie turned to me, mid-snap, and said “I have just gained 10 grey hairs.”

🤣👨‍🦳🤣👨‍🦳

After all of the shared soapy sponging of car, and shared washing of the car, baby girl pulsing water from the hose in the air like a gazillion times, and then deciding to water ALL the plants in the front yard 3 times each, she then decided she didn’t want to give the hose back.

Hubbie stood there telling her somewhat calmly that she had to give it back.

And that’s when I went snap! snap! snap!

Because I knew, in no time at all this would be a funny story. It would be one of those things that we could look back on fondly and say “remember when she would hog the hose?”

Only we wouldn’t have to wait ’til next year, next month or next week…

Foresight told me that it was only a matter of a change of scenery.

I took a final pic that showed baby girl complying –

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Happy for once, that despite all my positivity, it was him, and not ME.

😉🤣💦

 

#1251 To remember a song

Don’t you hate it when you walk into a room with purpose, get distracted by something… pause, and then think ‘what did I come here for again?’

It can be soooo annoying. Especially when you are super-busy or time-poor, which is almost everyone nowadays. I can usually backtrack my steps, go back to the ‘other’ thing I was doing, and sure enough within 10 minutes at the very most, the thought comes flying back to me, and just as quickly I then go to get it/do it/create it.

But it happens in so many different ways too.

You will catch up with an old friend and say “I had so much to tell you – I just can’t remember now…”

Or you will be falling asleep at night and think of the most creative and inspiring thing, and yet it is all but blah blah blah at sunrise after you wake up.

Or like me, you hear a song, try your best to remember it for future reference… and then forget.

That’s almost what happened to me yesterday. I didn’t even hear the song in question. I just remembered it. Out of nowhere. I was listening to another 80s tune on the way to meet my friends for dinner, and this other song popped into my head out of nowhere… I didn’t have it in my CD collection… I didn’t have it on my ipod… I just willed myself to remember and play it/show it to Hubbie the next day.

Tonight while starting to wash the massive pile of dishes from dinner, I went to put on the Bluetooth speaker to make my task more fun… nothing like a distraction technique like youtube to make the monotonous of washing dishes interesting…

And literally, just as I said to him “oh, I had a song I wanted to play for you…”

Guess what?

BANG. The song actually flew INTO my head! Not out.

Well what do you know?

I know, you are hanging to know what it is. 😉 It’s a song from a well-known 80s movie, and due to the movie it’s from I think many don’t tend to relate this song to the movie, because of a fairly prominent other song from the movie DEFINITELY tied to it.

Footloose. Sure, ‘Footloose’ is the song from Footloose, EVERYONE knows that. But did you know this song features too?:

See?

Hubbie hadn’t even heard of it. EVER. I was gob-smacked. This guy who plays 80s music almost every night…

The best line:

“I swear that I can see forever in your eyes…

(sing with me!) – 

PARADISE.”

Thanking my memory bank for this romantic 80s rock duet 🙂

 

 

#1208 Hubbie and jocks

“I should buy some more jocks this week…” it was kinda like a question that came from Hubbie, some days ago.

I paused for a second, trying to work out what he meant. “Well yeah, it’s better to have more…”

HOLD UP. Something occurred to me in that moment, of this fussy man of mine that I usually need to beg and plead to buy more jocks and socks (because when I buy them they are all WRONG).

“Do you need me to do the washing?”

“Well yeah, but I didn’t wanna bug you, you’re busy this week.”

OH MY GOD!

“Just tell me!” I cried out in horror.

Rest assured… I did the washing today.

There are jocks. There are socks.

And most importantly, there is love from my husband, who is doing his best to soothe me and keep me calm and happy in this busiest of busy weeks for me, just so I stress less and have more smiles than frowns on my face.

By going out and doing what he does, least.

That is love, people.

#1163 Love through a window

Often I forget how good I have it, despite my concerted daily gratitude journaling.

It happened this morning. I was at the kitchen, finally tending to the dishes that had piled up since the day before… dish after dish I washed, while Hubbie passed my immediate view from outside, off to do his put-off job of cleaning the barbeque left over from Saturday evening.

He passed me once. Twice. Three times. We smiled grandly at each other. Blew kisses. Mouthed “I love you’s.” I realised as he walked off that I was still smiling stupidly from our little gestures.

Which were big, in fact.

And that’s when it hit me – I was so lucky. I was so lucky to be in the place, the relationship, the state we were in. In love. Happy. There were people in loveless marriages. Who felt stuck. Confused. Unsatisfied. Unheard. Used. Mistreated.

I had a man who thought I was pretty cool… and likewise, I thought he was pretty awesome too.

And all of this, at the kitchen sink 🙂

#1128 Un-asked dish washing

Today, as I held my head in my hands, grappling with not just a thumping headache but sorrowful emotions from the day, Hubbie took his empty dinner plate to the kitchen while baby girl and I had our last bites.

Running water. Clinking of dishes. The opening and closing of the rubbish bin.

It was unmistakable. He was doing the dishes.

My Hubbie. A helper, but also a ‘hater-of-dishes’ kind of helper.

Still he got up.

Unasked.

No fanfare.

With simple action, practically in the background, he got up and got to it.

And I suddenly loved him ALL THE MORE. 😍😍😍❤️❤️❤️🙏🙏🙏🍽🥣🥄🍴

#709 The spider and the moth

Gratitude can often be found, in the strangest of places…

I have a non-visual story to tell, one that was the briefest of moments, and one that made me gasp in disbelief. But first, let me show you my day in photos.

Some days I stay home and do the washing. Other days are FULL.

This such day, was FULL. And visual.

We did lots of things, and I am grateful for the opportunity to have done them all. The first included a visit to the Circus that is currently in town:

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The first and last time I had been I was 8 or 9, so my visits between have been non-existent. Baby girl has never been, so combined, my desire to see it when the ol’ Silvers sign popped up in town, was deep.

However despite all this and the magic and jazz and what-not, baby girl spent the first half of the show begging me for popcorn after seeing others eating it, and then after the interval as she ate said-popcorn, she then proceeded to ask me repeatedly to go home.

Sigh. That’s my girl for you. Sitting for a couple of hours for Frozen on Ice was difficult for her, and that’s one of her favourite movies.

But the best part of the morning? When I took a handful of her popcorn, and she calmly and firmly said to me “no Mama, no more, that’s enough.”

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Oh how I LOLed and LOLed.

Second up after lunch was a café and park visit. These I love as they are merely a short walk across the road and down a street to a local strip of shops that sit near a park. I feel so local, so integrated in the community when we head over like that. First we stop for a caffeine injection

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And then we head over to the playground to get her play off some steam

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It was hotter than expected though, so we didn’t stay too long.

The evening gave us an opportunity to cool down and unwind, as we got super close to nature. Boneo Maze and Mini Golf are doing a special month-long Summer event that ends in about a week, called Lantasia, which showcases lit-up lanterns and light installations along their park grounds and tree walks, as night falls.

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This was also interesting and inventive, chilled and relaxing too, and would have been more so if baby girl didn’t have to go to the toilet twice while in the middle of one such long walk, and since there is only one lot of toilets in the café, it meant we had to go ALL the way back down the walk to get there. But there was a Vintage Carousel too, so that kind of made us forget the annoying-ness of the former.

 

All of today’s events were super exciting and fun and made for a very tired and spent baby girl by day’s end, leaving me grateful for a multitude of reasons… but one thing stood out to me today, and it was the most unexpected thing, that I am still in awe of the memory in my head.

In between the park and the Lantasia lantern walk, baby girl and I were chilling at home, doing this and that, and I went to head outside and hang some washing. (I even do it on FULL days, you see).

I got to the door, and could see there was a moth sitting on the security door which was outside of the glass sliding door I was about to open. I scrunched my nose in disgust, as saying that I have a strong unpleasant aversion to that gross insect is an understatement, but I also wondered why the hell it was there then, since it was about 5:30 and there was still hours left ’til sunset – they were more a dusk/night insect.

As I opened the sliding door, the sudden movement made it fly away, and I was satisfied until I saw with dismay another moth fluttering crazily nearby the wall of the house, near a window.

What, another one? What was this? I watched it carefully as I stepped out, careful in case it flew towards me, or worse still for the long-term, in case it flew inside the house. It hovered, fluttering gently though erratically as moths do, and I kept my eyes trained on it, holding my washing with me, as I slid the door closed behind me, this moth flying in the bottom corner of the window frame… until suddenly there was a movement of black. And a spider suddenly crawled out of an indistinct hole in the corner of the outside window frame.

I watched as it grabbed hold of the moth – it all happened so quickly I can’t actually believe what my eyes saw – and then the fluttering came to a slow halt. There was a fellow scurrying of black legs, and the spider disappeared with its catch, back into its invisible-to-the-human-eye, hole.

WHAT?!

Had I been 5 seconds later, I would have missed the whole thing. And instead, here I was, watching two insects I care very little for, suddenly become a David Attenborough documentary before my very eyes!

Had either insect been in our house, I would have ‘gotten rid of them’ without concern. Both cause me alarm, more so moths, because with their erratic flying they can cross a room in seconds, and I don’t like that. Spiders are somewhat easier to contain.

But when I saw that spider today, not only catch its prey, but in doing so, rid the exterior door of moths?

I was impressed.

I said to Hubbie later on, as I retold the story, “when you next spray bug killer around the house, avoid that window frame.”

My buddy lives there.

My buddy the spider.

He looks after the moths for me. 🙂

And so concludes the story of the spider and the moth.

 

#327 Back to routine

I think we were ready for it. Even Hubbie said today, following his first day back at work at a new workplace nonetheless “I was happy to go to work.”

Holidays are amazing. They are freeing. They are a luxury, but also, they are very, very, very much-needed.

But, what tends to happen to us on holidays, is, like in the words of Elsa, we Let it Go.

Wake up early? Let it go.

Cook? Let it go.

Washing? Let it go.

Hobbies? Let it go.

It might seem a normal thing to sleep in during your holidays, but when you are going to bed late and then waking up late, every day, your body comes to expect so much more, until that first back at work morning when your 5am alarm gives you a very unexpected and rude awakening. Not to mention your body suffers.

Eating out everywhere might seem like the most first-world thing to do, the most luxurious of fanciful endeavours. But when you’re over-indulging night after night after night, and taking that extra bit of cake, just because holidays, well by night 12 you might be wondering why it’s so hard to zip up your jeans. Not to mention your body suffers.

Caring about the washing might seem like a fairly tedious and insignificant thing to pay much attention to… but when several week’s worth of everything gather up to the point of having piles on your laundry room floor, well, it’s hard NOT TO notice. Not to mention your body suffers… from lack of clothes.

And when you start to push away your usual everyday hobbies, passions and pursuits, whether they may be playing an instrument, writing a novel, learning a language, or practicing some form of dance… well you start to miss it, while your artform at the creative endeavour also slips. And your body, mind and soul, suffers.

Today was Hubbie’s first day back at work. And though I don’t go back for another 2 days, I like him, was also happy for the routine to recommence. To some degree, you need a routine. You rely on it. It keeps you on track. With just enough of it

*going to bed and waking up at a reasonable hour keeps you more alert

*cooking keeps you healthier, and mindful of what goes into your body

*washing keeps you with a smaller laundry hamper!

*and hobbies keep you happy, and with a sense of purpose.

Hubbie and I have realised that we need some sort of order in our lives. We always need something to do, something to work towards, and something to look forward to. Today I was quite happy getting back into the habit of washing (several loads), cooking (and really being mindful of what I was eating), and getting back into some sort of more regular writing habits.

As for the sleep? Step by step peeps.

I think we went a bit crazy over these last few weeks, because, well that’s what you do on holidays. We knew we would go back to some kind of routine eventually, and wanted to just Let It Go, for as long as we could.

And I mean, if we happened to ever be the recipients of a massive cash windfall, and never had to work again, hey, I WOULDN’T COMPLAIN. Not at all. It just means we would have to set up a regular routine, of looking after ourselves and our life, in amongst the fun of never working again.

Sigh. Dreams.

Random is good. Random is great. But I wanna enjoy my life in amongst the crazy times, you know? So I CAN enjoy those crazy times.

So today, I’m actually happy for the return of routine into my life. Hell, I’m even grateful for it.